Confused about poor customer reviews? I referred someone (lets call him John) to an Attorney that was exceptional. I personally used his services when moving my ill mother to Florida. This attorney got the job done quickly for me, communicated well and was very responsive. I, therefore, felt very comfortable making more than one recommendation plus a testimonial on his website.
John had a different experience. Not a bad service, yet a bad experience. Let me explain.
John’s mother is in a nursing home and was injured early last week. No one notified John. It became complicated because there was also another brother involved, and the brothers did not communicate well. The attorneys scope of work did not extend to the care at the nursing home, but John did not know that and called for this attorney, upset.
John called me because the attorney did not return his call (it had been a couple days). I called the attorney immediately, asking him to call John. It was this past Friday late afternoon. The attorney made good arguments on his success with this clients legal matter; that the concern was outside of the scope of his services; that he was busy when the call came in – and other reasons for lack of follow up. But (here lies the problem) he still had not returned that call. John was angry and venting.
What happens when you do a great job, but don’t close the loop for the customer? It does not matter who was right or wrong. It does not even matter if it was not his job. In fact, at this point the client is not thinking about the positive outcome of the legal matter. He is emotional, and emotions often take over the thought process.
There is a massive difference between doing an excellent (technical) job, and providing exceptional service.
I can go on, addressing service, processes, expectations and communication. But for brevity, lets look at real and potential outcomes for this specific story, regardless of who is right or wrong.
- John has shared his story with who knows how many. He was angry, and talking.
- I will not recommend this attorney again because he could not take the time on a Friday evening to help calm this customer. Not even with my request, and I was an excellent referral source for him. (Luckily I do have another great Elder Care Attorney contact so let me know if you need one!)
- Who knows what John might publish on social media, that could reach thousands.
- This attorney will never get referrals from John, all over a misunderstanding. And this could be a huge loss, because John will come in contact with many potential referrals just visiting his mom.
Does it really matter that John called about something outside the scope of the contract? No!
Most probably, all it would have taken was one (timely) return call to make a huge difference in the outcome.
Regardless of how great we may be, always return a call, timely. It does not matter if it is ‘your job’, do it anyway. A kind hand will make a difference. Offer it with gentle care.