Friday, February 04, 2005

What do you do when a blizzard creates chaos?

What do you do when a blizzard creates chaos?


Here's a great story of customer service from the recent blizzard in Boston, courtesy of Kevin Weiss, who writes Take Ten Minutes.  The key paragraph here:


The gesture was appreciated, but the real test of a company isn't how well it apologizes for errors, it's what it does to eliminate them.  In the aftermath of a service failure, organizations must choose between two distinct paths.  One is to see problems as a result of rare events, unforeseen circumstances, and issues beyond control.  The other is to accept responsibility for the entirety of the situation and own every failure.  Companies that choose the first path repeat their mistakes; companies that choose the second prevent problems from recurring and discover ways to mitigate "acts of god".


This issue of accountability is huge.  Who makes apologies?  Who accepts the idea that prevention is better than apology?


It is a substantial shift in thinking.  It challenges me, I hope it does you as well. 


I hope this is helpful.



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