Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Mistakes are human and so should the response be

I had cause recently to raise a concern with a nappy recycling company that I have subscribed to since Noah was born because they had not arrived to collect the nappies. I knew what the problem was in all likelihood mainly because of technology. Some sat nav systems take you to the same address in the next village and that was the most likely reason.

I completed an on-line form and true to their word I heard back well within 48 hours - they explained that the usual driver who knew the route was off on holiday and the replacement driver was unaware of the sat nav issue. The email contained profuse apologies and reassurances that the problem would not happen again.

All fine and good - but the response also told me that the usual driver had gone to Florida - had a great time and had even been into the office on his return to share his lovely holiday experience. And it was that detail that well, actually made me smile.

Don't get me wrong - my 'complaint' was not a serious one - and I had always received good service so was not aggravated or annoyed in any way. Their basic response would have been fine - but the fact that this had been freshly drafted with probably irrelevant but interesting information and no standard paragraphs just made it feel human and real - even if it was in an email form.

So when handling complaints and queries may be it's time to think about your processes. Review your letters. How many standard paragraphs do they contain? And ask yourself do the responses to supporter queries and complaints sound as though they were written by a person for another person in response to that specific enquiry or complaint?

If not, then may be it's time to have a re-think to ensure that your supporters know there are real people on the end of the pen and paper or email and allow your character to come through. After all, as we all know people give to people so therefore it stands to reason that people respond better to people, real people whether complaining or congratulating. And don't forgot what an opportunity there is if complaints are dealt with well.

Thanks as ever for stopping by.

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