Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Good Policies Might be Hurting You

Fortinos - The grocery store

The scanner priced my 10-lb bag of potatoes. I noticed that the price was $1 more than advertised. Reluctantly I pointed the discrepancy out to the cashier. She was obliviously new and was out of sorts. The customers behind me in line looked displeased. But I waited stoically. When the supervisor arrived she looked at my bag of potatoes, the computer display, then muttered something that both the cashier and I missed.

The supervisor punched some cash register buttons and walked away.

The cashier and I stared at each other waiting for something to happen. Then we figured out that the supervisor had rung my purchase of potatoes as free.

I did not expect my purchase to be free – only to be as advertised so I was awkwardly yet pleasantly surprised. The cashier was obviously new and did not know the store policy so she could not tell me about it. Who knows why the supervisor did not explain the store policy to me and/or the cashier.

A well-intentioned customer service policy was diluted by the actions of the grumpy supervisor. The impact was lost on me – the customer. Instead of feeling special I felt confused, frustrated and cheated.

Learning point
The best marketing is training, testing and reviewing your staff.

George Torok
Power Marketing

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