Last Thursday I lost my Kindle.
I was flying from Denver to Atlanta sitting happily in my first class upgrade… and I actually read a little bit…
And when I got off the plane and got to rental train station – I had that feeling…and I knew.
I knew I had left it behind in the pocket of the seat in front of me.
Boy, was I bummed.
Then it started… I tried to call Delta’s Lost and Found, and encountered many trees. No, not forest trees, but many menu trees. And at that moment of stress, of loss, that’s the last thing I wanted to hear, menu trees…there was not a live agent to be found. That’s not much comfort for the distressed traveler.
And isn’t it always that way? When things are going right, they’re going right and you really don’t much care about the intricacies of the airline’s deeper customer service capabilities; and even a bad airline is fine, as long as the plane takes-off and lands.
But when something goes wrong…well…that’s a whole other story, a test for customer service. And if it wasn’t for the nice live clerk behind the counter at Delta’s Lost and Found in Atlanta Hartsfield…Delta would be Lost…and I’d probably be ranting and raving about the lack of respect for a traveler who’s lost something and is no doubt in an unfortunate situation and needs help. And I just lost a Kindle. What if I had lost my wallet or my passport?
And of course, here it is… an opportunity for outstanding customer service that was missed.
And that’s when I realized that there was a difference between customer service and customer care.
Customer Service is about when everything is going right… and Customer Care is about when things go wrong. How you are treated as a customer. Because it’s nice to get the perks of Customer Service and anyone who has read this blog knows that TOA and I are all about providing great Customer Service - streamlining making sure people get the everyday things they need, thinking about it deeper, making it better. But Customer CARE… that’s another dimension….
That’s having the right attitude and approach, the right infrastructure and personnel to take GOOD CARE of people, your customers, when things don’t go well. That’s when the rubber meets the road, that’s when we separate the men from the boys, the wheat from the chaff.
And real customer service is all about Customer Care.