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Is The Customer Always Right?

NuevolutionNuevolution subscriber Posts: 30 Bronze Level Member
I think good customer relations is about compromise .. no one is right and no one is wrong.

Nikole, finally something we agree on.. You are correct, it`s not about the customer always being right, its about compromising and meeting half way.
If you allow your customers to think they are always right, then you will be their personal door-mat. You loose credibility, because the customer thinks they are educating you and telling you how it`s supposed to be.
But isn`t that why they hired you? because you are the professional? the expert?


  • LiveWiseLiveWise subscriber Posts: 5
    There was a time when a customer had to prove they were right.  It went too far with "The Customer is Always Right".  I think this allows for the customer to expect a company to lose to make them happy.  I feel that their has to be fairness on both ends of the customer and the business.  Both can compromise.
  • RicWillmotRicWillmot subscriber Posts: 14
    Are you ready? Repeat after me:
    "That will not work."
    "You have some better options which you should consider."
    "That is not really a good idea."
    "No, I am not going to do that."
    Deliver sensational customer service; but do not cower to those who pay you a fee for your best advice or superior product. Recently, a human resources manager contacted me from a major legal firm in Melbourne, Australia. She wanted detailed answers to ridiculous questions. I mentioned that I had consulted with a dozen legal firms all around Australia and always began my projects by discussing objectives and outcomes with the managing partner or owner.
    The HR manager huffed that she would never simply "allow" just anyone to talk to an executive. Hasta la vista, baby. Your loss.
    We won`t survive in business too long if we continue to accommodate irrational requests and forfeit our own personal and pofessional perspective and integrity. We need to secure our own self-esteem. Your customers are surrounded by `yes` people on the payroll. The client doesn`t need you agreeing for the sake of trying to win the sale, preserving a contract or staying in `good.`
    Most of us are so afraid of losing the business that we do not do enough of the smart things to win the business. Assuming the client is always right is one of those mythologies that perpetuates average performance. And it does neither you, nor the client any real long-term good.
    Other than that, I don`t feel strongly about it.
  • SandraPSandraP subscriber Posts: 3
    I think in any relations - customer or otherwise - you have to get past who is right and who is wrong. If both parties goals, objectives, needs, whatever can be met then great, do business together. If not - move on.
    And I really agree with Ric - we need to not be afraid of losing business. I know I have "fired" many prospects only to find the next one was a  great client that I would have missed had I been focused on the "bad business."
  • RicWillmotRicWillmot subscriber Posts: 14
    Spot on, Sandra.
    A poor prospect NEVER makes a good client!
  • NuevolutionNuevolution subscriber Posts: 30 Bronze Level Member

    The more you can let the customer always be right the better off you will be. It kind of depends on the volume of business you do and what you can afford to take a small loss on. Usually when its a "customer is always right" issue it involves money back to them for a refund, supposedly not receiving an order or retunring a product for dissatisfaction.  What you are willing to do for the customer even if it costs you may get you more clients or customers in the future. At least that`s been my esperience.

    To a certain degree I agree with you, but did you know that Online fraud and scammers are on the rise? What if you ship something to your customer, they receive it and turn around and tell you " I didn`t get my order" then what? But you know they did because they signed the UPS slip? Then what? are you willing to take the loss and ship out the same item again? What if the item is worth "$500.00 are you willing to loose $500.00?
  • cogonielcogoniel subscriber Posts: 0
    I have to say it -
    The customer isn`t always right but the customer IS always the customer. 
    Many have touched on the reasons this is so.  Treat them with respect.  Be honest.
  • vwebworldvwebworld subscriber Posts: 40
    The "customer is always right" is not meant to be taken literally.
    Taken literally, it is not true. The intent of the phrase is to emphasize the importance of the customer, their desires and needs when you interact with them.
    Without customers...there is no business. Good customer service and how the customer thinks he/she has been treated affects you return business. You have a business decision, do what is needed to retain a customer or not. You may not want repeat business from some customers.
  • RicWillmotRicWillmot subscriber Posts: 14
    Here is a link to an article I wrote for the "In Business" newsletter of one of Australia`s largest banks, entitled: Is the Customer Always Right?

    http://www.anz.com/aus/bus/inbusiness/b ... issueno=53
  • RicWillmotRicWillmot subscriber Posts: 14

    Here is a link to an article I wrote for the "In Business" newsletter of one of Australia`s largest banks, entitled: Is the Customer Always Right? http://www.anz.com/aus/bus/inbusiness/b ... .asp?issue
    That`s a really well done article! Not only in content, but also as to writing style. I`m impressed...!
     Thank you, Craig.Your comments are VERY appreciated.Rgds,Ric
  • RicWillmotRicWillmot subscriber Posts: 14
    If Ric wrote it, which I assume he did....I dunno...probably `cause he said he did!...then I like the idea of quoting himself. I`m gonna steal that, I think.

    In this instance, I cannot take the entire credit. I do use the technique and I will come to that in a moment. However, in this instance, the Media person at the bank wanted to take my article (which she did almost verbatum) and make it read like an interview.
    Now getting back to the technique, it is simply the `Media Release` technique of writing. And I hope I do not bore anyone here; but let me give you an example of a Press/Media Release which got me lots of attention and publicity. For those of you who would like to use the media for your business, you are welcome to use this as a template. But also consider using it in writing some of your articles as well, because I do you use the technique specifically to give articles an air of third party credibility, even though everyone who receives it and reads it, knows I wrote it. Go figure!!!


    Society for Executive Wisdom Press Release

    For immediate release

    August 24, 2007


    You can’t fix stupid or lazy


    The war for talent is fiercer than ever with record long-term low unemployment. It is increasingly difficult to discover that ‘perfect’ candidate. In days of yore, good jobs were jealously sought and difficult to acquire, which meant the hiring corporation was the plenipotentiary of the unemployed and carried ultimate authority in deciding the successful candidate. But as Dylan said, “The times they are a changing.”


    Research undertaken by the Society for Executive Wisdom (SEW) has confirmed what is commonly believed, and that is that employers are continually making compromises, adjustments and trade-offs on skills, aptitude and attitude on a regular basis. Furthermore, the Society research has verified that this frequently leads to deficient recruitment decisions; costing the organisation not only money, but time, teamwork, aggravation and inevitably, clients.


    “Better to know what you are getting yourself into, and how to mitigate the potential downsides, than to be blindsided down the road,” says SEW member Sion Ford, Managing Director of Lab Distributors.


    CEO and Founder of the Society for Executive Wisdom, Ric Willmot, FAIM MIMC, says “You cannot fix stupid or lazy.”


    If a candidate lacks some required skills, can you hire anyway? “Certainly,” says Mr Willmot, “provided three conditions exist.”



    The candidate really is who she says she is.

    They applied to a position they are unqualified for, and are trying to convince you they can do it. Be careful they do not get ‘too’ convincing, and get loose with the truth regarding their qualifications and past performance.


    And, on performance, theirs must be primo.

    You are already taking a chance on qualifications; do not compound that effort by stretching on diaphanous ability as well. Mediocre applicants … well, wish them the best in their job search.


    Can the candidate learn?

    Make sure the candidate is smart enough to learn additional skills, particularly the challenging kind you have been unable to find. Look for indicators that the person has previously learned on the run. Importantly, gauge their general desire to work when interviewing and investigating their background. Submitting new hires to rigorous additional learning while working with veteran skilled professionals and taking on real business challenges will quickly get them the skill they need.


    Mr Willmot says, “The problems associated with an ever-decreasing talent pool are not going to evaporate along with Australia’s water reserves. Success will reward the informed and astute employers who can hire for enthusiasm and train for skill.”




    Addendum: The Society for Executive Wisdom is currently researching the tangible and intangible costs of hiring the ‘wrong person.’ Results will be published on our web site and disseminated when completed.


    The Society for Executive Wisdom is an association of executives, business owners and professional practitioners from varied and diverse industries. For more information contact Ric Willmot at http://www.executivewisdomsociety.com, or (07)3395-1050.

  • RicWillmotRicWillmot subscriber Posts: 14
    "Yup, I like that," Mr. Landes said in an exclusive interview with Startup Nation`s Electronic Forum software.

    Has a nice sound to it, Craig.
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