A friend texted me an interesting question last night as she was eating in a local restaurant.
What do I do when the service is good but the food is not?
Do I tell them?
A valid question and a reminder that not all the focus can be on the customer experience because the product is just as important.
A great customer experience supports a well planned product, whether it is the perfectly executed nine course tasting menu at The French Laundry, the best shoes at a great price from Zappos or a superb night’s stay at Ritz Carlton.
Imagine that during your visit to The French Laundry you are treated as royalty, but instead of being served a divine dish fresh from The French Laundry farms, you are served beanies and weenies. No amount of planned, repeatable customer experience will make that acceptable for the price of the product, right?
So I propose an addition to the Six Laws of Customer Experience by Bruce Temkin, customer experience transformist and Managing Partner of the Temkin Group.
1. Every interaction creates a personal reaction.
2. People are instinctively self-centered.
3. Customer familiarity breeds alignment.
4. Unengaged employees don’t create engaged customers.
5. Employees do what is measured, incented and celebrated.
6. You can’t fake it.
And the New #7: A well planned product or service that is aligned with the experience.
So what did I tell my friend? A bad product is a bad product. Fortunately there is always room for improvement…but not if they don’t know.
Although her opinion is just one of many, if the restaurant integrates customer feedback and insight throughout the organization (one of four core customer experience competencies by Temkin), then they already know and (hopefully) are making changes to the product so it meets the customer experience they provide.
And then, once again, the employee, customer, organization AND product/service are aligned.