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What happened to “the customer is always right”?

My first ever job at 13 years old was as a shop assistant in a busy town centre fruit and veg shop, and it was here I first learned the mantra ‘the customer is always right’. We were expected to always ensure the customer left the shop feeling like they had received the best possible service and went home with everything they needed. If they felt they didn’t get that service, they would only have to say, and it would be rectified.

Now this was only 26 years ago (eek, showing my age), the mantra and respect behind it has remained with me to this day, but I think it would be fair to say it is slowly starting to die out and in fact, recent experiences tell me the customer is very rarely right anymore.

At KC Accountancy Services, customer service is at the heart of our business model and ethos, our customers are all VIP’s and without them, we wouldn’t be what we are. I was lucky to receive many Christmas cards from my clients in December, but one of them stood out with a heartfelt message included. It gave me a moment to breathe and be thankful that our customers are aware and feel the level of service we strive to provide.

I started to ponder, if as a generation we start to shift customer service from being the focus of our business and move success, growth, and wealth into its place, will it work? How long would it work for? Do I want those things to be my focus?

I kept coming back to the same stomach sinking feeling of, I didn’t like a world where the customer was no longer the focus and most important part of a business, so I re-read that message my customer had taken the time to write to me and reminded myself of why I set up the practice in the first place, in an industry seen as stuffy and archaic.

My first ever business goal was to offer the best possible service a customer could expect, to take the weight off their shoulders and to allow them to breathe. With the hope this support, and high level of service would give them the ability to offer the same to their customers and so it goes on. As the world turns, and generations change, one thing we will never change at KC Accountancy Services is our focus and that will always be our VIP customers and offering the best possible service we can.

In saying all the above though, I’m interested and intrigued to hear your thoughts as consumers and fellow business owners – is the customer always right, or is it time to move on from this? What is the focus of your business model?

We are embarking on a brand-new year, and let’s hope it’s better than the previous two.  Whatever you feel the focus of a business should be, I hope 2022 is successful, less stressful and kinder than we have experienced recently.

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