Service Recovery: It Always Starts with the Right Attitude

happy customerMeet Steve Camp. If you don’t know him yet, you will want to after reading this story.

I recently hired Steve (Steve Camp Construction) to install tile floors in several rooms of my home, including the bathrooms. The last items on the punch list for completion involved reconnecting the toilets in the house.

So picture it.  It’s the last day of a week-long job and those final tasks are almost finished when one of my pipes burst from the main water line. As you can imagine, water went everywhere, but not on my floors. No that would have been too easy. This happened between my first and second floors. So yes, imagine water building and building underneath the floor and above the ceiling of another room.

Thanks to Steve’s quick action, the degree of water was lessened dramatically but the laws of biology win and moments later, a small hole appeared in my ceiling.  This inevitably led to both a plumbing and drywall fix – both of which can get tricky.

If this is where the story ends, you would hate what happened for me (and maybe be thankful it wasn’t your house). But I will tell you that my confidence and support of Steve and his team grew even more because of how the above chain of events was handled.

Service recovery.  It will always start with attitude.

Steve immediately took responsibility for the burst pipe and very logically explained to me what I could expect next.  In a nutshell, this would be fixed as quickly as possible.  The leak occurred around 2:30pm.  By 4pm, a plumber had been to my house, replace the pipe and my water was back on.

By 6pm, a team of workers arrived to begin tackling the ceiling.  I was in another part of the house and I overhead Steve tell the team,   “Okay guys.  Here’s our game plan.  We’re doing everything we can until I feel it’s time for us to go home.  Okay?”  To which the two fellas replied, “Yep. Let’s do this”

They worked until 10pm completing stage one of the repair.  The team arrived again the next day to finish the heaving lifting and by the third day, there was no trace of any problem from earlier in the week.

Now what occurred for me in those three days of repair?  Steve and his business gained a fan for life. He will be my “go to” first for every home project I consider.   Why? #1: He does good work.  And #2: He backs up his work and I don’t have to worry about the service or quality he will put forth.

A few principles really stood out for me as I reflected on my experience with Steve and his business:

  1. He does what he says he will do. I don’t have to second-guess his word.
  2. He communicates with me along the way to ensure I understand what is going on and ensures my understanding and support.
  3. He goes out of his way when necessary to take of the customer.
  4. He takes ownership of any service or interaction that has his name associated with it.

We would hope every business shares the same perspective on customer service.  I’m convinced many do not.  For any business leader, maybe a little refresher is important to share with your team. Can you say – with confidence – that every
member of your team shares your philosophy and practice of customer service? For your sake, I hope your business doesn’t experience your own “water leak” to find out.

Thanks again Steve!  You and your team are the best!

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