I don’t know about you, but it seems to me that most businesses have absolutely no clue how to deliver decent customer service. Even the basics are missing in action. Simple basics like a polite greeting, a willingness to help, and/or a commitment to responsive follow-up to a problem.

My telecommunications provider could care less that my Internet has been down for days, getting my insurance agent on the telephone takes forever, and good luck finding a restaurant that has that magic combination of good food and good service. Even worse, many businesses don’t understand that profits are simply a byproduct of good customer service; that customer service defines growth. Case in point, I recently witnessed a local restaurant lose a very large number of long term customer because the owner was rude to a guest….and it happened in days.

One of my hobbies is collecting and restoring antique outboard motors. I enjoy bringing these unique machines back to life, and I also enjoy learning about the entrepreneurs of the early 1900’s who built the manufacturing companies that made them. Those companies were obsessed with innovation and service.

One of those manufacturers, The Caille Perfection Motor Company, had a very comprehensive view of service, which was clearly defined in their letter to every new customer. I recently obtained an original of one of those letters for my collection, dated September 7, 1921 (The Caille Perfection Motor Company Letter), which I hope you will take time to read. Here is a summary of the promises made to customers in that letter:

  • “You are not simply buying a piece of merchandise, you are buying service”.
  • “Service is what you receive from the merchandise you have purchased; such as the ease of use and comfort it provides to you”.
  • “Service is a guarantee that the merchandise, both workmanship and material, is free from any defects”.
  • “Service is not only what is built into the merchandise, service also includes the “spirit of the manufacturer. This means that the manufacturer must ensure that you know how to use the merchandise correctly, and that if there is misfortune, you can have confidence that the manufacturer will take care of the problem for you.”
  • “Service is not limited to six months, or a year, but is without limitation, and it has no restrictions”.

If we want financial success, we first have to succeed at delivering great service. Make great service the priority, and profits will follow.

If you would like more information about how we help our clients improve customer service, please contact me via email (doug@thedougwilliamsgroup.com), cell phone (305-926-7526), or at our corporate offices (305-964-5595). You can learn more about us by viewing our website (www.thedougwilliamsgroup.com)

Warm personal regards,

Doug Williams

Chief Executive Officer