I would think that in today’s economy everyone would be striving to perfect the art of customer service. I rely 100% on referrals for obtaining listings and buyers and know one of the reasons I do well is because I strive to provide great customer service. I have had two experiences lately where customer service was not bad, it was absolutely non-existent. In the first one, I contacted several pool companies to give me an estimate on diamond-briting my pool. Out of the three companies that I contacted, only one came by and followed up with a quote and a phone call to see if I had any questions regarding the quote. I contacted one of the companies again, only because they are well known and I figured anyone can make a mistake, and they stood me up for a second time. Sorry, but if I have to work that hard to give you work, I can’t imagine how hard I will have to work once you have my deposit.
The second instance is actually with a company I recommended to a client. I had referred this company before with rave reviews. This time however, my buyer is completely unhappy because a project that should have taken 3 weeks has taken two months, she tries to get people out to the house to finish the work, they set a date and time, don’t call or show up, and no one in the company has called to follow up, apologize or explain the delays. My client is patient and understanding, but the lack of communication has led to her frustration. To stress how important customer service is: in this case, I was at a gym class today and someone asked the group where my client was. Several women started saying that she was having nothing but problems with the house (I sold it to her) because of the company installing the windows (I recommended the company). One woman asked, “What is the name of the company so I can avoid them”? Imagine if my client had been happy with her windows. Instead of having 8 women who will avoid this company like the plague, they would have been referring them instead! In addition, I will no longer feel comfortable referring this company, as it has affected my reputation as well. So instead of taking Yosemite Sam’s view of complaints, use them to perfect your customer service.