“If you can’t say something nice…”

How many times did you hear this phrase when you were growing up?  My Mom would remind me regularly about the importance of the wise saying “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all…”  Wow – I wish companies today would reconsider this adage.

There’s a fine line between being competitive and being critical.  Instead of telling me about the great services a company provides, I hear agents telling me how awful their competitor is – berating the competition with phrases such as “have you checked them out with the BBB?” or “you’re not going to like how they treat their customers.”  What I (and all customers) hear is “you’ve made a really dumb decision” or “you’re not very bright to have made such a choice – are you crazy?”  When I’m on the line to cancel my services, using this harsh approach does not distinguish you in the market, but rather leaves me with a poor remembrance of how little I was valued as a customer.

While you may know the pitfalls of your competition, you want my departure to be a good experience.  Why?  So when I am ready to return to your premier services, I will easily make the decision to come back, and not recall that the last interactions I had with you included your unkind criticism about the my personal choice.  Keep singing the praises of the great service and product offerings you provide, and customers will keep you in mind …. and maybe even become your customer again!

by Stephanie Taylor, a 17-year communications and management professional, with 10 years training expertise and leading successful teams in a variety of settings. Stephanie’s keen attention to service delivery and customer interactions makes her a natural fit with BPA, and she is delighted to contribute each day by helping agents excel.