I have been told this by a few mentors. They think I expect too much from people and companies. Am I high maintenance or am I getting older and just fed up? Maybe it is a lot of years of abuse and I am just over it.
This is one of my most favorite movie quotes: “The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee. Short, tall, light, dark, caf, decaf, low-fat, non-fat, etc. So people who don’t know what the hell they’re doing or who on earth they are can, for only $2.95, get not just a cup of coffee but an absolutely defining sense of self: Tall. Decaf. Cappuccino.”
– Joe Fox – You’ve Got Mail”
Starbucks has it figured out. They will give you what you ask for without any hesitation. When I take my daughter, who is 14, to Starbucks I do feel like I am in a 90210 scene as all teenagers had a trendy coffee back then, because it was the empowerment of becoming an adult. She will order a coffee off their menu and modify it six different ways. The barista EVERY TIME responds with: Got it. He doesn’t sigh, get irritated or bothered by her. Why? They give you what you want and put the customer first. They make her feel like she is an empowered woman, who can take on the world. He hands her a cup with her name on it essentially telling the world to watch out, because she is a force to be reckoned with. They also upcharge with additional items added to her concoction. So both sides win! She will choose Starbucks over any other coffee shop, because she knows she will be taken care of and not feel like a bother.
Her now perfect perception of the world is going to come crumbling down and fast. How many other businesses put the customer’s emotional needs first? This is why some call me high maintenance. If I order something from a company and am told no I am baffled. If you have all of the supplies on hand and I make a special request why can’t you deliver? Go ahead charge me more. I am not asking for free. I am asking for my emotional needs and wants to be taken care of. This is the same with a company when they tell me they are going to do something. I have learned that most of these instances do not involve the owner. As most owners would you ever turn away money? So when I am turned down it is by an employee, who gets paid an hourly wage. This person will still get paid whether they go above and beyond. This type of company needs to take the approach of Starbucks and put the customer’s emotional needs first or they need to train and pay those that are dealing directly with a customer as if they are a sales rep.
If you are an owner who has made a promise that sounds like this “I will get back to you on this.” and you don’t it doesn’t leave you very credible. I choose to walk away from those businesses because I can no longer trust you. If we were to do business in the future I will have that small feeling deep in my core – I hope they deliver because I need them to, as this will reflect on my business. I have learned it is the same as that other whimsical phrase we hear way to often, “Let’s do lunch soon.”
Yeah, let’s not.