Is Your Customer The Hero?
“We are all the hero of our own story” – a common expression often attributed to Mary McCarthy.
One of the biggest mistakes companies make when it comes to creating an unforgettable customer experience is that they really don’t understand their customers wants and needs.
One of the most fundamental human needs, is to be the hero of our own story. We all believe that our dramas are more important, our challenges are bigger and our triumphs are more justified than anyone else.
It isn’t narcissism, it’s just human nature.
We are all the hero in our own story.
Whether your customer is trying to pull off a Princess wedding on a waitress’ salary or struggling to get home in time to watch his son’s baseball game, what your customer is looking for is someone who understands them and can help them get to where they want to be. You need to position your company as the guide who can help them get there – NOT the hero!
You’re probably thinking: that’s pretty straightforward. I can do that.
But can you?
Do you know how to make your customer the hero?
It’s not that easy. In fact, most leaders struggle to make their customer the hero because it’s easier to talk about ourselves. And most entrepreneurs and business owners are focused on talking about themselves because that’s what everyone else is doing. Everyone is focused on telling their customers why their company is the best fit that they miss out entirely on what their customers are actually trying to achieve.
In Melissa’s case – most companies would have simply apologized and said there was nothing they could do to get her bag by the beginning of her race – right?
Anyone who has ever lost their luggage on a flight has likely had a similar experience and settled on buying some clothes to wear until your bag arrives, just as Melissa was considering doing.
It was only because Reecie, a 30 year veteran of the military was able to understand how important the race was to Melissa and how not getting her bag would affect her teammates that this story happened at all.
Reecie saw a chance to make Melissa the hero for her team and create an unforgettable customer service experience
“The time a Southwest employee drove 6 hours round trip to get a customer’s bag so that she could make her race.”
And luckily she was supported by a company that allowed her to drive 3 hours each way to get Melissa her bag.
There were many points in this customer experience where things could have broken down.
Reecie could have been too busy dealing with other passengers’ complaints to actually listen to Melissa and hear her.
She could have decided that missing a race wasn’t that big of a deal.
Her manager at Southwest could have decided that it wasn’t a good use of personnel to have Reecie drive 3 hours each way to deliver a lost bag.
ut at each step, the company asked what they could do to put Melissa in the best position to succeed.
At each step they decided to make Melissa the hero of her story.
That’s what your company needs to do as well if you want to really connect with your customers and create experiences that they will never forget.
And when you create experiences your customers never forget, well, they will never forget! And they’ll likely share their experience with everyone they know.
Something tells me Melissa won’t be flying any other airline if given the choice ever again, all because an employee and a company took the time to make their customer the hero of her own story.
How are you making your customers the hero?
I want to hear from you, leave your answers in the comment section below!
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