Exploring a Better Customer Experience
The importance of understanding your purpose and aligning that to the company’s or business’s vision.
I recently wrote an article about my experience with buying a caravan and the little things that were done to make the experience more memorable. What I didn’t talk about was that after going into their business to pick up the caravan, we had a two-hour hand over, with a gentleman.
He does this every day at 9, 11 and 2. He met us in the office, took us out to our van and methodically walked around, externally and internally, explaining every tool to us, how it was used, tips and tricks and exactly what to expect from the caravan. That service is beyond what we expected, and it was certainly something that we valued.
However, the real topic that I wanted to discuss was the gentleman, who delivered this service; bear in mind that he does this three times a day.
There’s three different brand of caravans that are sold at this particular dealership, so he is going over maybe at most 10 different versions of caravans and there will be numerous times where he has gone over the same one three times in that day, and that is his job. That’s all he does.
Now, a lot of people would say there’s just no way I’m going to do that. It’s just so repetitive and mundane. It’s just something that I’d not want to do, and to be honest, I’m probably in that category.
However, this gentleman had that much enthusiasm, was so passionate about what could be done, that it was amazing. It certainly made me feel so excited to purchase this caravan.
A Valued Customer Experience
So, after we finished, I said to him, “You literally go and do this three times a day? Go around and explain all the different functionality of the different caravans?” “Yes, that’s exactly what we do.” He responded.
I said, “Don’t you find it hard? Isn’t it mundane when you’re obviously going over the same things over and over again. There are definitely differences between caravans, but there are a lot of things that are the same, so it’s not like he’s going over a whole new range each time he goes over a different brand.”
And he just looked at us: “Yes, it is hard to maintain that enthusiasm if you’re not passionate about what you do.” But, he has a van and he said that one of the things that his kids talk to him about now that they’re both grown up is camping trips that they went on as young children with the family. It’s something that they’ll cherish forever.
So, today, we have children who are more interested in playing computer games, watching TV and not being outside. Again, in his childhood, he was always outside and being active. And with his kids, it was the same.
He wanted to encourage them to go out to the great outdoors and be active and, as result, his kids are very healthy and they have a great relationship with their partners because, potentially, the exercise component they have in their lives has contributed.
So, I say, “Okay. I can understand that, but how does that translate to you and enthusiasm because during this presentation you are being that enthusiastic and yet, Monday to Friday, this is what you do?”
I want to share my enthusiasm with the clients and get them excited about getting them to use these caravans, going to see things you would not be able to otherwise, and have that close-knit family unit and away from the technology that is quite often overtaking kids’ lives. So, I look at that and that tells me the purpose, his individual purpose.
He’s around, enlightening or making the families experience such that kids have a healthy upbringing, that they do have exercise as part of their life and that they’re not glued to this technology.
So, he’s all about enriching the family unit experiences and allowing people to actually see these natural wonders that potentially you’d have to go camping to find.
So, I thought that was pretty cool. Then I talked to the salesman about why he does what he does so well. And, he said because he used to be a car salesman and car sales was enjoyed, but where he worked there was a lot of pressure about quotas, it was commission based and just selling as many as you could.
Whereas, with caravans, yes there is obviously a sales component, but it’s an experience that you’re selling. Some would argue that can be true for cars too and obviously previously where he worked, that wasn’t emphasized.
Passion Driving Greater Purpose
But, the culture of this business has obviously been designed, either intentionally or unintentionally, to be around not products, but why you would sell this product and the experiences that go with it. That speaks to what we talk about: understanding your purpose and your why.
If you aligned the business goals, to your own personal goals, then you’re going to enjoy what you do and that is so evident particularly by this gentleman who shows these caravans because he is so passionate, he’s so excited about being able to show these people how to get the most out of their caravans and how to go and have these experiences that you’ll potentially be talking about for years later with your children and, potentially, even their kids.
So, that’s why it’s so important to understand that, yes, you’re in business to make money, obviously, you must make a profit because we have to keep the doors open.
However, profit is a result and, if you are not connected to a greater purpose, then you potentially will get burnt out and struggle to know why you are doing what you are doing. And, certainly the passion will fade as time progresses.
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