Few months back, one of my Indian friends asked me, Do you hate Microsoft? I replied, “No, I love Google.” Every one of us is in love with some specific companies. They build very positive image in our mind not just because their products / services are awesome at affordable prices, but in fact there are some great things happening inside these companies all the time.
I Love You More Than My Dog (Amazon Link) is a worth reading book by Jeanne Bliss. This book talks about specifically what is common between all beloved companies. Let me share you some interesting finding of the book and my ideas on becoming a beloved company.
Humanity into their business
Beloved companies take time to set their philosophy, they understand that they are doing business with humans, so they always try to keep humanity into their business. They consider lives of their customers when make decisions, so the customers become emotionally attached to them.
They don’t handle their customers, they treat them humanly in the way customer expects. The language of Welcome Message seems if an old friend wrote it, not a computer.
They love their employees
Beloved companies believe that employees are the face of the company so they really respect them and believe that these are the people who make a difference.
Vineet Nayar, CEO HCL, developed a management approach called Employees First, Customers Second that has become known around the world. “ What we want at HCL is passion. We want people to be burning up with their desire to pursue their interests. Fascinated by their assignments. Jumping out of their skins with excitement about what’s next. Eagerly pursuing better solutions and new initiatives” wrote Vineet in an article in Forbes Magazine.
I personally believe very much in this approach, but I think good companies have been doing this since long before the businesses came under studies. Letting employees do what comes naturally to their mind other rather than following strict policies yields more result for the company.
They trust their customers
Today every business claims to love & trust their customers, but we as customers know that this is not very common. Inside the beloved companies, they decide to believe. They believe their employees and they believe their customers, their connections are genuine.
By deciding to trust customers, they are freed from extra rules and layer of policies that create a barrier between them and their customers. They enjoy a personal relationship with their customers.
They make uncommon decisions for customers
We often experience that a company’s service / products doesn’t match with our specific need. Officer at the other end says, “I understand your need & circumstances, but I’m sorry this is our company’s policy and we can’t change to that.”
But at beloved companies their employees make uncommon decisions to fulfill customers needs. Their customer service reps have the authority to do whatever it takes to make the customer happy. They don’t read from a script or follow process…they help their customers.
Beloved companies takes help from their heart and mind to make uncommon decisions by considering the needs and emotions of the customers.
They admit and say sorry
In real life everyone of us say sorry on mistake, to the people who have value for us. In business sometimes things get wrong too, apologizing well and repairing the emotional connection with customers is identity of beloved companies. They don’t hide behind the wall, they tell the whole story openly, clearly and honestly.
They apologize the fault and promise to make things better. They don’t refuse to answer questions, and encourage further communication to discuss the situation. As a customer it doesn’t only make us satisfied, in fact it makes us love them more.
Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos.com, the world’s biggest online shoe retailer & winner of numerous customer services awards said in a May 2010 article in SUCCESS Magazine that, “Customer service is about making customers happy , and the culture is about making employees happy. So really, we are about trying to deliver happiness wether it’s customers or employees and we apply that same philosophy to vendors as well.”
We are naturally programmed to treat others as we’d like to be treated ourselves, is Golden Rule which we should never forget in life nor in business. It’s all about being right more often than wrong.
I would love to know what is your beloved company, what makes them beloved for you. Please share your leading thoughts in the comments below.