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Is The Customer Always Right Essay

2543 words - 10 pages

Is the Customer Always Right? 1Is the Customer Always Right?Discovering the true implications of the saying "The Customer is always rightThe Customer is Always Right" and the impact it has to businesses.Scott CurwoodIs the Customer Always Right?"The Customer is Always RightThe Customer is Always Right" has been around for almost 105 years (Kjeruf, 2008). While it was first uttered as a marketing slogan to show customers that a retail store put their customer satisfactions before all else, it was discovered in as early as 1915 that customers could use the saying to take advantage of a business. Research suggests that "The Customer is always rightThe Customer is Always Right" is wrong because it creates negative customer service issues, causes staff to be unsatisfied with their jobs, and customers become disenfranchised with your business. This paper will analyze each of these areas and discuss what businesses can do to correct these issues and still provide exceptional customer service."The Customer is always rightThe Customer is Always Right" causes negative customer services issues by forcing your staff to make exceptions to your established business procedures and gives the customer a false sense of control. Let's create an example we might witness at your local department store. It's a few days after Christmas and a woman comes into the department store to exchange a shirt that was given to her as a gift over the holidays and she would like to return it. The reason for the return doesn't matter, let's focus more on that it was a gift and we will assume she doesn't have a gift receipt. From my retail experience, this woman is entering the store already upset because she has no receipt. She subconsciously realizes that the more she appears upset the more likely she is to be able to return the gift. Once she gets to the counter, she demands to return the item and receive the money back in cash. It's at this point that staff are put into a tough position, the customer is obviously pre-agitated and staff are reluctant to deal with them since the overall exchange is negative from the start. In order to get the customer taken care of and eliminate the negative confrontation, staff will, in most cases, just give in to the customer wants even if it goes directly against store policy.The above example shows how businesses become reactive rather than proactive in their customer service. If the woman returning the gift was told no, because she didn't have a receipt, the implied result would have been her increasingly becoming more negative and making a scene in the business. The result of giving her what she asks for is a spiral effect of other customers witnessing that behavior getting results and your customers interactions becoming increasingly negative. The right thing to do is to follow prescribed policies and living withunderstanding that the customer is not being right. The conflict of being reactive lends to how the customer is not always right...

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