October-November 2021 - 12

* Run a new electrical line to the
breaker box and replace the plug:
$2,600.
* Re-run the current electrical line
to the breaker box and replace the
plug: $1,200.
* Replace the plug after a complete
diagnostic evaluation: $650.
Somewhat stunned, I asked, " You
mean, you just can't replace the plug? "
" No sir, we have certain procedures, "
Jack said.
Then I tried to tug at his heartstrings
by asking, " Is this the same job
you would offer to a family member,
like your dad, for example? "
" My dad would fix it himself. He is
an electrician, " Jack replied.
" We aren't the cheapest company
out there and maybe, we just aren't
the right company for you, " he added.
" We have a company policy that I
have to follow. "
GEE, THAT MAKES ME FEEL GOOD
After that nice little touch of feeling
cheap and demeaned, I sent him on
his way and fixed it myself. Note to
DIYs: if you shut down all the power
in the house, it is hard to get shocked!
Of course, because every company
today is obsessed with customer
feedback, I was contacted by Ron, the
electrical contractor's customer retention
specialist.
" We noticed that you didn't use
our services, " Ron said. " How did it go
with Jack? "
I made it clear to Ron that Jack
was totally professional, but that Jack
is stuck with a company that plays the
" short game " when it comes to customer
service. Instead of providing a
solution that everyone would feel good
about, Jack was following a company
policy of chasing the quick buck, no
matter how obviously distasteful it was
to the customer.
" The fact that the diagnosis of the
problem, an obvious problem, was
$200 alone, that was incredible. Jack
Operators who continue to deliver quality
services now will develop a stronger
business in the long run.
89804733 | Rawpixelimages | Dreamstime
You are resilient, you have
found a way to survive
and we are getting
close to some sense of
normalcy once again -
we can only hope.
didn't even bother to check and see if
the plug was working, " I explained.
THANKS FOR THE NEW MATERIAL
Naturally, I thanked him for providing
me with an excellent example of
playing the customer service " short
game. " Because of the electrical contractor's
approach:
* I would never use them for any
future job, small or large.
* I would never refer them to anyone.
* If I were a vindictive type, I would
probably give them a scathing
review on Yelp.
THE CHALLENGE FOR
OPERATORS
OCS operators face the same challenge
as that electrical contractor. It
is easy to gouge on price or just say
no to customer requests during these
12 Automatic Merchandiser * October/November 2021
difficult times. Clients are desperate
and frustrated. They want service
for their underperforming facilities,
especially for the few employees who
are required to be in the office until
the post-pandemic " all clear. "
When that stressed out office
manager calls your office and asks for
four cases of bottled water instead of
the 40 cases that they would normally
order, make the delivery. When that
HR director calls, completely panicked
about the inventory of paper cups
(even though two sleeves will probably
last their depleted staff another week),
try to get someone out there to take
inventory of the situation.
LONG GAME RICHES AND
REFERRALS
As a former operator, I know that
playing the long game is a tall order,
especially when survival is at the top
of the list, but here is the reality: you
are resilient, you have found a way
to survive and we are getting close to
some sense of normalcy once again -
we can only hope.
When the fog lifts and that elusive
horizon is finally in sight, the operators
who played the long game and delivered
quality service and value despite
the obvious challenges; they will enjoy
the riches that accompany solid business
relationships and the referrals that
come from delivering excellence in
both good times and bad. ■

October-November 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of October-November 2021

The Long Game
Up And At ‘Em
20 Months In
They Are Legend
Editor’s Note
Industry News
Classifieds
Social Hubs
October-November 2021 - PCOV1
October-November 2021 - PCOV2
October-November 2021 - 1
October-November 2021 - 2
October-November 2021 - 3
October-November 2021 - 4
October-November 2021 - 5
October-November 2021 - Editor’s Note
October-November 2021 - 7
October-November 2021 - Industry News
October-November 2021 - 9
October-November 2021 - The Long Game
October-November 2021 - 11
October-November 2021 - 12
October-November 2021 - 13
October-November 2021 - Up And At ‘Em
October-November 2021 - 15
October-November 2021 - 16
October-November 2021 - 17
October-November 2021 - 18
October-November 2021 - 19
October-November 2021 - 20 Months In
October-November 2021 - 21
October-November 2021 - 22
October-November 2021 - 23
October-November 2021 - 24
October-November 2021 - 25
October-November 2021 - They Are Legend
October-November 2021 - 27
October-November 2021 - 28
October-November 2021 - 29
October-November 2021 - 30
October-November 2021 - 31
October-November 2021 - 32
October-November 2021 - Classifieds
October-November 2021 - Social Hubs
October-November 2021 - 35
October-November 2021 - 36
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