The four employees just stood there in horror while my husband looked at what had just happened to our car.
It was as if they were frozen and didn’t know what to do.
I couldn’t take it any longer, so I said to the group of them, “Is someone going to do something? You are all employees here. We are CUSTOMERS.”
One stepped forward and started to walk towards our car, which was parked outside of the dealership while we waited for them to bring our new car around.
The landscaping crew had cut down all kinds of brush and someone new on the job (or perhaps without an ounce of common sense) turned on the blower and sent an avalanche of leaves, sticks, mulch and dirt all over our convertible car that had the top down.
The man who stepped forward after I spoke up was a manager. He was completely unprepared for what he saw and at that moment, he was behaving like a bystander instead of a leader.
A leader would have rushed over to the situation and the customer to see how they could help.
A leader would have taken control and assured the customer that they were going to fix the situation.
A leader would have demonstrated a sense of urgency, and some compassion for what their customer had just experienced.
It took this manager a few minutes to recover and find his judgement. Eventually, he was composed enough to tell us that they would take our car and clean it, and fix the damage that had been done, but his behaviour was too slow.
He didn’t respond with the urgency that was required to diffuse the situation, and so on a day where we were picking up a new car, we left the dealership with the shadow of this experience hovering over us.
Mistakes happen. People do stupid things. Most often, they don’t do them on purpose, but rather human error or lack of attention to detail causes something to go wrong.
No customer expects you to be perfect but what they do expect is for you to demonstrate a sense of urgency when it comes to fixing what has gone wrong. They do expect you to take ownership of what has happened.Never underestimate the power of #leadership when it comes to #marketing. Click To Tweet
When you do this, your leadership enhances your marketing, because your customer remembers how you handled the situation over the mistake that took place.
But when your leadership is lacking, you create a multitude of problems for the business you work for. Your lack of leadership has a direct impact on the business through reputation, brand, and client experience.
Never underestimate the power of leadership when it comes to marketing. You can stand out in a good way, or you be the reason a business loses a customer for life. That customer will become the biggest word of mouth antagonist you’ve ever met.
Leave a comment below, and let me know of a time when you’ve experienced a business demonstrate excellent leadership.