This past year while traveling to attend the annual Universal Unilink convention, I was in a rush to catch my connection to San Antonio, TX. In my haste, I left behind my sport coat in the Admirals Club at Charlotte Douglas International Airport.
While waiting for my luggage in baggage claim, I quickly made a phone call to American Airlines Customer Service and explained my dilemma to them.
After explaining my situation, they asked if I would be returning home through Charlotte, to which I responded that my travel plans had me continuing onto Phoenix, AZ and I would not be returning home through Charlotte. Following a few brief moments of silence, to my surprise instead of passing me off like a hot potato, they told me that they would call me back in a few minutes with a solution.
This brief interaction with their customer service representative made me think of what our customers look for and expect from their vendors and suppliers. Will their current vendors/suppliers take the time to solve their issues at hand or pass them off like a hot potato? As customers, you have choices as to whom you work with and as vendors/suppliers we have the obligation to provide services and products that not only help our customers by meeting their expectations, but to make sure that we exceed their expectations as well.
As today’s healthcare market continues to change at a quick pace, your customers as well as our customers expect us to perform and deliver products and services at a level that will make them want to develop a long lasting relationship with you. New fabrics, new styling and new technology are desired by our customers in order to give them that one little “edge” over their competition and are steadily becoming the deciding factors of whom we choose to do business with and grow our relationships.
In today’s world with easy access to global sourcing, anybody can sell a scrub, a lab coat, a polo shirt, patient apparel, entrance mats, promotional items and more. But the question you need to ask is: are they willing to go that one step further, listen to your pain and concerns and then work with you to develop a program that helps you not only meet your expectations, but also develop a program that will exceed your expectations.
After about an hour or so of waiting for my return call from American Airlines, my phone rang, at which time I was informed that my problem was resolved, and arrangements were made to have my sport coat waiting for me at the Admiral’s Club in Terminal B upon my landing in Phoenix, AZ.
Boy was I relieved, problem solved! But wait, it gets even better. Upon landing in Phoenix and stepping off the plane, as I entered into the airport, a representative from American Airlines was standing there with my name on an iPad and my sport jacket on a hanger waiting for me to claim it.
Now that is what I call service. Not only were my expectations met, but they were exceeded as well.