Alec has been on the road since 4 am. He’s picked up three fares all morning. The arrival of Uber has hit him and other Melbourne taxi drivers hard. According to Alec, the taxi industry has seen a 40% decline. He says he earned as much twenty years ago as he does today. He complains…

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Marketing tactics often centre around finding customers for our products. We devote as much (sometimes more) time to generating enthusiasm for what we make, sell or serve as we do to making, selling and serving. It’s important to tell a story that resonates with the right customer. We do that by being clear about the…

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My local bank manager, at the branch five minutes walk from my home, works hard to help customers navigate the bank’s new automated systems and services. He’s on hand to show everyone depositing cash how to bypass a teller and make a deposit using the machine in the foyer. The bank manager at the branch…

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Your customers are changing. You are changing too. Notice how impatient we get now if we are second or third in a queue. In our world of one-click-ordering, instant downloads and movie streaming, we believe waiting is unacceptable. ‘Why can’t they just open more checkouts?!’ While it’s true that you can’t please all of the…

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David Beckham scored 114 goals over the course of his 20-year football career. More than half of those goals were a result of what’s known as a ‘set piece’. A ‘set piece’ is a carefully orchestrated and practised move in a team game that returns the ball to play. Beckham became an outstanding player because…

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YOUR COMPETITORS DON’T… 1. Obsess about how their products and services make customers feel. 2. Help people to ‘buy in’ and belong (not just to buy). 3. Make something that’s not for everyone. 4. Question how they could do it better. 5. Listen twice as much as they talk. 6. Do what they say they…

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Unhappy customers are a bit of an Achilles heel of the committed entrepreneur, business owner or leader. When you’re working hard to build a business and do meaningful work the last thing you want to hear is that you haven’t met the mark. You can find thousands of practical, stay calm, listen, sympathise, don’t take…

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I’m not sure when we became defensive about customer care became. I suspect it might have been when we began to put more distance between the customer and us. In the days when there was a cash register that rang with ‘real money’, when we sold eye-to-eye and transacted hand-to-hand, instead of digitally, we had…

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On a recent international flight, a colleague was upgraded from Business Class to First Class. The four cabin crew had only eight passengers to look after, so they could be extra attentive. The in-flight service was stellar. Everything happened quickly and smoothly, the menu was more varied and the seats more comfortable. But for all…

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“You’re here for the Valium?” blurted the dental receptionist as they arrived. The young man looked blankly at her and then at his mother. He was about to have three wisdom teeth removed under local anaesthetic. He had arrived early to be prepared for the procedure and dutifully took the 20mg of Valium given to…

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