As they say in A.A. – “admitting you have a problem is the first step.”
It should be the first step of a problem situation for any business, but of course it’s not. No one wants to admit they screwed up, that it was their fault. Maybe it’s human nature. Maybe it’s corporate culture. Maybe it’s some evil hybrid in between, but regardless of the source, few companies are wont to acknowledge a screw up.
It’s too bad really, because a lot of companies would get a lot less flack if they just fessed up. More importantly, companies could use a policy of honesty to fix things more quickly. Once you’ve said, “Hey, I buggered this, I’ll admit it,” you’re more likely to feel the responsibility to fix it faster and respond to your customers more quickly too.
And you’ll develop a culture of openness, honesty and great customer service.
Now “corporate Yosko” (who some consider to be “fun-loving Yosko’s” evil twin) might say, “Hold on now, I’m willing to take some responsibility, but we’ve all got skeletons in the closet that should remain there right?”
Ok, I’ll follow along with that for a moment. At the end of the day we’re not all going to get around in a circle and sing “Kumbaya.” There are ways of telling your customers that you’ve screwed up so that you don’t open yourself up for a scrutinizing inquiry or even more trouble. People are usually less concerned with WHY something went wrong versus WHEN it’ll be fixed.
Get to the point (which I often have a very hard time doing apparently) and make sure you provide people a simple explanation for the problem, and an estimated time of resolution.
Always be available to communicate with those clients that need more information.
Shit happens right?
And customers will forgive you provided you follow these rules:
1. Respond promptly.
2. Be honest, but keep it to the point.
3. Always be available if I have more questions.
4. Tell me when the problem will be solved.
5. Solve it before the time you’ve stated.