The Customer Has Lost It!

I read this fascinating book on an inter-city train journey – The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan.

For me, train journeys always give me time to introspect about what’s happening in my life. And when I read this whimsical and occasionally philosophical book on my Kindle, the introspection went a bit deeper.

This is a beautiful story about the journey of a woman, recovering from her life’s wounds, attempting to return the small lost things collected by her saviour cum employer over the years in the hope that he finds the most precious thing he has lost.

The story, incidentally, begins with the protagonist collecting something he finds on a train. It got me thinking.

We lose things. Practically everyone does. An umbrella, a pen, a cap, a file, a phone (Noooo!). Why?

Because, we multi-task. Our minds are not tuned to do multiple things at the same time. This has been scientifically proven (I still do not get why recruiters have a criteria called ‘ability to multi-task’ in the JDs they float). Because we are so doing multiple things at the same time, the routine task of remembering where we kept the daily use item slips from our mind. That can be infuriating.

Now, imagine the situation when a customer is angry or ‘loses’ his mind. Does she want to? Probably not.

She is going about her regular work and suddenly an anomaly pops up in her daily routine which is already cramped with different and simultaneous tasks. You as the service provider / supplier did not deliver on a regular routine work and she loses her mind – an angry and difficult customer.

That is something to keep in mind when you are designing your customer experience strategy: when you get an angry customer, your not meeting performance expectations has put a spanner in her work. She is angry at the situation and that anger is directed towards you, your business or your brand. Attempt to bring back normalcy in the life of the customer.

Use empathy and don’t let a customer go away.

P.S: if you actually lose things, try Tag8 – a great product which uses RFID technology to help you get back your important things from anywhere in the world.



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