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It’s easy to get sucked into the drama and the negativity of your worst customers. For some reason, no matter how hard you try, there will be some people that you will find impossible to please. My advice: stop trying. I am not suggesting that you ignore all problem customers. That goes with the territory. What I do suggest is that you don’t ignore your BEST customers. Pay a lot of attention to them. Educate your customers; explain the reasons why you are suggesting certain repairs or services. However, you will find that devoting your time and energies to your best customers will bring you a lot more happiness and add a lot more to your bottom line.
A customer wanted to speak to me the other day to let me know of a situation he had on the road. He said that there was a car that was tailgating him, and it turns out that the driver of the car was one of my techs. The customer was driving to my shop to pick up his other car and saw my tech pull into the shop. The customer was upset and said he was surprised that one of my employees would drive like this. I thanked him for bringing this to my attention, and said I would look into it. BUT, the customer said one thing that did not sit well with me. At one point he said, “Maybe he thought I cut him off?” In the meantime, my tech went up to one of my advisors to let him know what happen. We sat down with the tech and I could sense he was upset. I asked what happened and he said, “I was road testing a car, and a car pulls out in front of me. I nearly locked up the brakes and then I backed off. It happened real quickly.” After listening to both sides, it was clear in my mind that what happened was a mistake on both sides. This tech has never shown me anything but respect and is a soft-spoken guy. I believe him. The truth? Well, I have learned that each side will state his position and the truth is usually found somewhere in the middle. Equally important: Don’t be too quick to judge the employee, listen to all sides, ask question and focus on what happened. Correct the performance. People make mistakes. If you have the right people, look to improve and move on. Lastly,when the employee knows you have their back and looking out for their best interest, this will go a long way with morale.