insert into the marketplace. Customers, however, determine
the quality of the services they receive. And riding herd on
what happens in the factory is lot more predictable than
getting customers to do what they are told.
You might say your service grade has improved from a C
to a B. Nevertheless, yesterday’s B to the customer is today’s
C. Poor or indifferent service has become horrible service;
mediocre service has become bad service.
Even the yardstick of service has changed.
WHY CUSTOMER SATISFACTION IS WORTHLESS
“Your satisfaction is our No. 1 goal.”
Unless your organization is the only ;sh in the pond,
using customer satisfaction as the yardstick of success will
lead to disappointment and potentially failure.
Look up the de;nition of “satisfactory” in the dictionary.
It says “good enough to ful;ll a need or requirement.” It also
means “adequate” or “suf;cient.” Today’s customers don’t put
“adequate” and “value” in the same sentence.
“Suf;cient” is hardly the language of loyalty — those
customer feelings that organizations must evoke to make
customers deaf to competitors.
Now, if you’re in the product-making business, satisfaction might be OK for object quality. Most customers want
their new gas pumps or tanks to do only what they expect
them to do. But when it comes to a service experience,
customers’ de;nitions of “adequate” or “suf;cient” quality
Imagine coming back from a great experience, say, your
honeymoon, and having someone ask you, “How was your
honeymoon?” and you answer, “I was completely satis;ed!”
You’d probably land in the proverbial dog house.
The impact on customer loyalty is signi;cant. The
chart on Page 46 reveals the effect of getting the product
or service outcome customers expect (the vertical axis)
with the experience of getting it (the horizontal axis). A
service experience can be so delightful that it overshadows a less-than-expected product, service outcome or
both. Also, superior products or service outcomes can