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Friday, January 22, 2010

Customer Satisfaction Survey - what does it mean for the customer?

There is lots of lip service nearly everywhere you turn regarding customer service, excellence, accountability, integrity, ethics, and nearly every other buzzword being bantered about by the news media and companies who advertise on these platforms. The problem is that by the time you figure out that it's only lip service, you are usually too far along in the process, in many instances anyway, to do anything about it. To make matters worse, many of these companies don't have any legitimate channels for you to communicate your dissatisfaction.

I submit that companies that offer guarantees as to their product or performance are more likely to make good on their promises or at least get closer to their promised level of performance. Companies who care enough to go to the expense of a customer satisfaction survey after the transaction has closed are even more likely to care about getting it right in the first place and making corrections when things don't go right. No person or company is perfect and it is unrealistic to expect perfection. However, we should expect to be treated with respect and with a certain level of competency. The company I work for has set minimum levels of performance for each position and employees who don't meet that minimum standard will be coached to achieve the minimum (preferably higher) or will be asked to leave. We also have standards of excellence where we earn bonuses and certain other benefits if these standards are met. This is putting your money where your mouth is. I can tell you that every employee at every level is more keenly aware of our performance and what we need to do to 1) continue working at the company and 2) earn bonuses and other benefits.

You have probably heard that a person's pay isn't the most important thing when it comes to job satisfaction. The sense of achievement and worth along with a healthy dose of respect usually trump an employee's pay. While we all like to earn a good living, a feeling of accomplishment is something that money just can't buy.

The next time you are shopping for a product or service or referring a friend to someone for a product or service, consider if the company can back up their promises with a guarantee and consider if they really care by following up their service with a customer satisfaction survey.

Feel free to leave your comments, experiences and opinions on the matter. I'd love to hear them. If you like my blog, you can subscribe to my podcast by going to and clicking on the "Podcast" link at the top and then the subscribe icon. See you next time.

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