The facts:

One unhappy customer tells 10 to 15 others about their bad experience. If it’s really bad they’ll tell the whole world. For every complaint that could be made, around 20 people don’t bother. This means 20 lost opportunities to improve your business.

If you handle a complaint badly or with a ‘couldn’t care less’ attitude or, worse still, if you hide behind the ‘rule book’, you will lose that customer for good. You can’t afford to lose even 50p because this will mount up according to something known as the multiplier effect.

The ‘Income multiplier effect’:

A customer comes into a leisure centre which was built last year.

The centre is trying to build up its customer base. It employs 50 staff, part time and full time, who haven’t received much training in customer service and complaint handling.

The customer asks about booking a squash court for later that day. He doesn’t get a positive reply and the receptionist’s attitude is very much ‘take it or leave it’. He shrugs and walks away.

How much has the centre lost in potential revenue?
– £5.00 primary spend – the price of a squash court
– £5.00 secondary spend – a drink, sandwich, possibly a swim, etc
– £500.00 potential membership fees

He will tell at least seven people about his bad experience so £510 x 7 = £ 3,570.

It is easy for a small amount of lost income to multiply to dangerous proportions.

Listen to your customers, they can improve your business if you listen to them, ignoring their complaints could destroy your business… Your choice!