Thursday, August 16, 2012

Culture of Quality & Value of Feelings to Customer

Quality culture is the collective behavior of all employees within an organization. It is formed by the organization's vision, mission, values, and individual beliefs. Quality culture will affect the way employees and groups interact with each other, with clients, and with stakeholders. It provides set of shared mental models that guide interpretation and action in organizations by defining appropriate behavior for a variety of situations.

Quality culture is shaped and nurtured by enlightened leadership. Leaders walk the talk and followers take clue from their leaders' actions. When all employees are engaged to serve their customers, both internal and external, then the organization is ready to create real value for all its stakeholders.

As we know, the mission of an organization is to serve its customers. It calls for understanding needs and wants of customers and managing their expectations. Employee encounters create feelings and experience for customers. When an employee delivers positive experience, customers will come back for more, as it creates positive feelings with customers.

Let me share some of my positive and negative experiences and feelings as a customer.

On the positive side I want to share two examples:
1). Twenty years ago we bought a Lexus automobile from McGrath Lexus in Westmont, Illinois. Over two decades, I have very positive experience with the dealership's service. With great service from Casey Komosa and Ruben Pesante, I have never been stranded on the road. This Lexus dealership epitomizes their motto of "Pursuit of Perfection" in all their dealings with their customers.

2). More recent example is from the Loyola Center for Health at Burr Ridge, Illinois. Due to a freak accident, I had a fracture on my left hand wrist. With outstanding care from Dr. Michael Bednar, an orthopedic surgeon, my fracture has healed and he recommended physical therapy. David Spear, Kim Esposito, and Kristin Malone, my occupational therapists have worked their magic over the last two plus months to make my hand fully functional. My experience is extremely positive and I have deep admiration for care givers at the Loyola University Health System.

On the negative side, I also want to share two examples:
1). In early 1980, we bought a riding snow thrower from a reputed company. We had an extreme slope for our driveway and the riding snow thrower with chains was an incorrect application. We had to return the snow thrower immediately and I had to settle for snow shovels. In this experience, the sales person  was too eager to sell me a wrong product.

2). In early 1970s, as a student I had opened an account at one of the most reputed bank in downtown Chicago. On occasions, I would visit the bank during lunch time and always encountered long delays due to tellers out for lunch and inadequate staffing to properly serve the customers. I realized this bank is not where I need to keep my account, and hence opened a new account at another bank with better customer service. Within few few short years, my original bank filed for bankruptcy and got closed. If you do not take care of your customers, then customers would leave you.

I welcome your comments regarding quality culture and customer feelings and experience.

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