“How do stamps work, Daddy?”


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My daughter came to me not long ago, mystified by a non-self-adhesive postage stamp. You know: the archaic kind of stamp that you have to lick.

She wasn’t joking around: She had no idea how these old-fashioned stamps worked. She had literally never encountered a stamp that you have to lick, and the idea that you would have to apply your tongue to something that in her entire experience had always been self-adhesive was not just — as she was quick to tell me — “gross,” but utterly, entirely perplexing to her.

So, here’s my question for you:

Are you putting your customers through hoops that seem sensible to you, “the way we’ve always done it,” but that no longer make sense to them? Think before you answer, because I’ll bet you are.

As far as customer impressions go, you’re not just competing against other companies in your industry, but against the entire landscape of modern commerce. In other words, today’s customers–your customers–have been conditioned by the best in the business to expect great ease in interactions:

• Amazon.com with its like-clockwork confirmations and no-brainer returns.

• Fairmont Hotels, where they don’t make you sign for room service (why would you make a guest sign… standing there awkwardly in her robe?… The tip’s included, and the guest is hardly going to run off with that club sandwich!)

• Southwest Airlines, which automatically rebooks you for the next available flight – no standing in line, no begging, they just do it – when your flight is delayed due to weather.

• And so many more.

So, tell me now: are you keeping up?


Micah Solomon

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Micah Solomon
Micah Solomon is a customer service consultant and trainer who works with companies to transform their level of customer service and customer experience. The author of five books, his expertise has been featured in Forbes, Fast Company, NBC and ABC television programming, and elsewhere. "Micah Solomon conveys an up-to-the minute and deeply practical take on customer service, business success, and the twin importance of people and technology." –Steve Wozniak, Apple co-founder.


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