Missed opportunity


My wife bought a cosmetic product she’d used before, and liked, but the doo-hickey to open the thing was defective. The next time she was at the market, my wife spoke to a sales clerk, showed her the problem, and asked for a replacement. 

The clerk said she’d had the same problem with that product and exchanged it. 

The thing is, when my wife got home, she had the same problem with the replacement. She couldn’t open it. 

She looked at the container, to see if there was something she was missing, and saw a toll-free number to call the manufacturer. They admitted they’d had this issue with that product and offered to send her another replacement.

Two days later, it arrived in the mail and it’s fine. 

The manufacturer did the right thing, didn’t they? They replaced the product, no questions asked.

They did the right thing, but they could have done more. 

They could have sent her two or three bottles instead of the one replacement. They could have given her some coupons. They could have enclosed a note apologizing for the inconvenience and thanking my wife for her patience and for her patronage. 

By not doing anything besides mailing a replacement, they missed the opportunity to surprise and delight my wife. 

Why do that? How would they benefit? 

By giving the customer more than they expect, they get a customer who won’t complain to others (or online) about the company’s defective packaging or tepid customer service, but instead, is likely to share her story about how well the company handled the situation. 

They’d get a customer who is likely to become a repeat customer, perhaps a lifetime customer, and possibly a “raving fan”. 

Which is something every business (and professional) wants to do. 

When something goes wrong in your practice, I’m sure you apologize to your client (even if it’s not your fault) and do what you can to make it right. 

That’s good. But making it better than right is even better.

Treating clients better than they expect is good for business