What does being transactional look like? And why is it so bad?

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Being a hopeless romantic, I had a fantastic proposal planned. The idea was gifting my grandmother’s ring to my beloved.

But there was a small problem.

I needed a ring box so that when I got down on one knee, it would help add to the atmosphere and even beautifully display the ring. Hence, I began my search for a suitable ring box.

At the first jewellery store, I asked the retail assistant if I can borrow a ring box that they may have in stock.

Her response was a resounding no. And if I wanted a box, I had to purchase the ring as well.

So I then questioned, “Well, what if I buy the box?” Because I was happy to purchase it to make the proposal go well. Sadly, her answer was again no, you will have to buy the ring to put in the box.

It is fair to say that I was utterly dissatisfied, so I simply walked out of the store. Could she not see that I would eventually need to buy additional rings? In fact, I would purchase three rings: an engagement and two wedding bands. Obviously, this store missed out on an excellent opportunity for gaining a loyal customer and repeat business. Luckily, there was an independent jewellery store situated in the same mall, and they jumped at the chance to help.

I finally got the ring box. And since they offered such exceptional customer service, we happily went back to purchase the engagement ring and the two wedding bands. In fact, over the years, we bought several different items from this store. It is quite apparent the retail assistant in the first store made a grave mistake. Frankly, I sometimes wonder what she was thinking?

Why would such a simple request that would keep a potential customer happy not be considered?

tTo our Customer Experience expert, Brenton Webber, it signifies one clear thing: Leadership.

Leadership is keeping the hammer on attaining sales targets and even stretch goals. The sales team is trained to only focus on only one thing: the number of transactions.

And this mindset is very shortsighted. But, thankfully, it’s also easily fixed.

Let’s put things into perspective. According to Newvoicemedia.com, U.S. companies lose more than $62 billion annually due to poor customer service. And, after one negative experience, 51% of customers will never do business with that company again.

Even though these statistics are from the US, they can still be applied in any market. They are not much different from wherever you are. Customers want to be looked after by the team throughout the entire customer experience.

And as a leader, you need to train your sales team to accomplish this. Simply put, it is time to put the customer first. And the sales will naturally follow.

So how can you get started?

Each morning, during your sales meeting, instead of reminding your team on sales targets, start making the shift towards practising a customer-centric mindset. Forget chasing the dollars and start chasing your customer’s satisfaction. So you will not miss out on great opportunities and additional revenue.

So, let’s get your team back on track on giving exceptional customer service. Let’s move
away from a transactional mentality to one of building customer loyalty. Remember, the customer may have a shopping problem, and we are there to help. Remind your team that everyone coming through the door deserves only the best. Allow them the license to break the rules and alter processes to suit your customers’ needs.

And if you need more helpful tips, you can learn more through our online course. We explore how to build practical skills for fostering awesome customer service for building a loyal consumer base.
With that said, let’s end with a riveting statement by Kevin Stirtz, author of More Loyal Customers:

Every contact we have with a customer influences whether or not they'll come back. We have to be great every time, or we'll lose them.

Kevin Stirtz