Sticking with the Ben Franklin theme I started last week, today I discuss a personal example that illustrates the simple idea Franklin meant with his quote, “Well done is better than well said.”
I recently hired a contractor to replace the roof on my house. I previously used this company and was happy with their work, plus they have outstanding customer service so I was comfortable hiring them again. During the installation I was out of town so I couldn't monitor progress, but I trusted them to get it right. Upon arriving home I was pleased to discover the roof was properly installed, looked fantastic, and was a beautiful improvement after living with ugly thirty year old shingles. I did notice however, four minor problems about which I contacted the vendor.
The project manager, Greg, immediately responded with a heartfelt reply and outlined a detailed action plan to solve the problems. Talk is cheap, however within days the issues were remedied. Whether Greg knew it or not, he provided a perfect application of Franklin's quote “Well done is better than well said.” to customer service.
I expected the quick resolution because of my previous experience with the firm, and again they met my expectations. The situation could have devolved into much frustration due to a lack of response or remediation. In an era of fly-by-night contractors I remain happy with my decision to use this company for the new roof and I'll give them a call for future house improvements too. I've even referred potential new business their way because of their excellent work and customer service.
My experience with this vendor reinforces the idea that quality customer service is extremely important to generate new, and retain existing, business. When the timing was such that I could switch to another contractor, I did not, based upon my history with their skilled workmanship and quality customer service. I'm not an expert construction guy, I left it with people I knew could handle the job and they didn't let me down.
So it is with Learning Management Systems (LMSs). At some point it's time to review the current software contract and decide whether to stick with the existing LMS or begin a relationship with an unknown vendor.
Reviewing shiny new features is exciting, however it's important to always inquire about the effectiveness of the customer service department too. It's easy for a company to make a sale and then ignore Franklin's advice by forgetting about the follow-up, which leads to much frustration, both with system implementation and ongoing system utilization. The outcome will be untrained employees, an unacceptable end result for any LMS.
For more details about switching Learning Management Systems, review this LMS Switching Guide.