Sunday, October 28, 2012

Simplicity story number one .....


First story submitted by my friend Marilyn Jess in the US – thanks Marilyn :

She says “Here is one I heard about just recently:
 
Cafe A --it seems like it's locally owned, and in a sense it is--except the owner isn't involved in any hands on way. When you stand in line to get service, such as a coffee, you're not greeted, and you can tell the staff isn't happy working there. Body language is very telling. And personalizing your food or drink order? Won't happen here. They actually turn off their Wi-Fi on weekends to discourage people hanging out there. Their core customers are tourists, and some local.

Cafe B--smaller, locally owned and managed, with local staffers. Anything you order here can be personalized. They encourage hanging out, and have Wi-Fi every day. Their core customers are local, and some tourists. They don't advertise much.”

My take on this ….
 
No brainer – Café B wins every time. Café A might suit the visitor who doesn’t care about that unmistakable personal service. Café B might be ok for the busy business person passing through. If I were a tourist I’d want to remember my whole experience in a locality and lack of personal service would mark the place down for me thus reflecting on the whole locality. On the other hand if I’m in Café B I suspect I’d feel valued and comfortable.

 Make your customer feel special –  that is Simplicity in action.
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7 comments:

Trevor Gay said...

My friend Carlos from Portugal, who came up with the idea of Simplicity stories asks me: How would you help Café A turn around the situation?

My first comment is a question: do they want to turn it around?

If the managers/owners of Café A are happy to stumble along, just about making a living but not setting the world alight in any way then I imagine it will carry on in that vein. It will remain an ordinary place with nothing new or interesting ever happening. High employee turnover will be a feature because employees recognise they are just putting in the hours and just doing enough to take home their wages – they are not stretched at all so they just do enough. Delighting customers is not a part of their reason for going to work because the bosses clearly don’t expect that of them. All in all Café A is place that is just waiting to die.

Now …. If they want Café A to change then my advice to the owners/managers would be to let the employees bring their own ideas to work and tell the bosses what is needed to make the place buzz. I’m convinced front line employees know the right answers. In many organisations managers often just get in the way, making it difficult for front liners to do interesting stuff. I think Café A would be unrecognisable within a month if the managers simply let go of the power and let the employees turn the place around.

Any other advice?

Dave Wheeler said...

Great question...

To me, the first thing the owner of Cafe A needS to do is admit to themselves and then to the team change is needed. Then their actions have to show they meant it! They could also in addition to all you mentioned do a little competitive comparison and analysis. What are other cafe's in town doing? What are the "best in class" doing? What can they adapt/adopt and then improve to grow their own client base and profitability. But nothing will work if they can't show the team they are credible when it comes to change...

Trevor Gay said...

Self awareness as always is the key Dave - do they recognise they are dying and need to change or not?

International Coaching News said...

As a person who is very particular on good customer service, I'd be in cafe B. An ugly reputation on treating customers can kill the business. Cafe A better watch out for that.

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Jubah muslimah moden said...

Thank you. good information about Simplicity story number one. The best.

Jubah muslimah moden said...

Thank you. good information about Simplicity story number one. The best.