Final Impressions

Great dealers all spend time mastering the art of making a positive first impression when a customer enters their showrooms. While these steps are critical, they are only part of the customer service process. Let’s examine some opportunities to make favorable final impressions long after she said “Sold!”

There will have been several impressions made before the installer actually arrives at the jobsite. If goods were custom ordered, was the customer kept aware of the expected delivery dates? Did the store proactively call to schedule the installation, or was this task left to the customer? Was the installation scheduled at a time that was most convenient to her, or the installer? Did we promise a reasonable arrival, or did we act like the cable company by not validating the worth of her time? These are all interactions that will affect the installer’s day before he ever arrives to perform the work.

Just as I advise for sales professionals, the installer should always be respectful of a customer’s time. In a day when everyone has a phone in their pocket, there is no excuse for arriving late without prior notice. A good habit to get into is calling the customer a few minutes prior to the promised arrival time to advise her that he will arrive on schedule so she won’t feel compelled to look out the window wondering if he remembered her. He should identify what type of vehicle that he will arrive in so that she is comfortable from a security standpoint. This is a courtesy that she will appreciate. It will also make him stand apart from other service providers. She will now likely greet him at the door with a smile, and he will be well on his way to establishing a good working relationship for the day.

While these may seem like small steps to take, they will produce a tremendous gain in confidence by the customer. When you learn to properly manage the first impressions of an installation experience, you will see your satisfaction ratings begin to climb and your level of frustration begin to fall.

Tom Jennings

Monday, February 4, 2013