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Moments of Truth

What does this phrase mean? Why is it so important in a Lean office environment?

A Moment of Truth is the time at which a customer first experiences your services (or product), and makes them realize (hopefully) they want to come back and repeat their business with you. It is the first touch point, and one which should make a lasting, positive impression.

What if you don’t make that lasting, positive impression? What are the consequences? Well not great. No further business from them. And one unhappy customer tells on average 10 others. Plus it costs 6-7 times more to acquire a new customer than to maintain an existing one.

So why risk losing that customer when it will cost time, money and ultimately result in a poor reputation?

W. Edwards Deming, quoted more than half a century ago that "It is not enough to do your best; you must know what to do, and then do your best."

Negative Moments of Truth can be avoided through the use of coaching, mentoring and regular refresher training of all employees who are in direct customer contact. In a real office environment, employee training in the form of reminders and refreshers is often put aside to instead spend time on dealing with complaints, orders, chasing and other daily tasks.

Why not add this now to your priority list, and ensure a proper training schedule in meeting and greeting customers is implemented in the next quarter?

It is never too soon to start, and ensuring training is included in the calendar on a regular basis could avoid the 10+ potentially unhappy customers, or the 6-7 x cost for a sales person to go looking for a new customer.

You can also use Moments of Truth to compare a good/bad manager-employee relationship, or when interacting with other internal department persons.

Good relationships gone wrong are very difficult to fix. And not comfortable to live with.

Food for thought.

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