We made a mistake last week and sent the wrong product to a customer. OUCH! So, Thom left this morning to go fix the problem and hopefully maintain a relationship and customer that we value very much. Thinking about that this morning, I wanted to just blog a little bit about making mistakes.
I have a theory about organizational mistakes. No mistakes are fatal in and of themselves. What makes a mistake fatal is how the organization reacts to it. Follow along with me here.
We shipped the wrong product to a customer. Strike One. Not good. Customer is upset, he has product he doesn’t want / can’t use and doesn’t have what he needs. How do we, as an organization, react to the next pitch? We are down in the count and still want to get a hit. Thom headed up to hopefully fix the problem. Did we get a hit (save the relationship) or is this another strike? Hopefully, Thom gets a hit.
But let’s say, the van breaks down, he’s having a bad day, the materials in the van get wet, the mission does not go well. Strike Two. We are still in the batter’s box, but we are only one strike away from being out. This is where we need to rescue the at bat and hit one out of the park. We have to bring our A game at this point. This is where you need to do something amazing and memorable for the customer.
If we blow it at this point, Strike Three. I would say that, if we don’t recover here, we just struck out. The catcher may drop the last strike, but even then, we probably won’t get on base. You still need to try to run to first base, but this will require a super human effort to maintain a relationship with this customer.
I believe that even mistakes are opportunites to serve and build relationships. I think we have all had experiences where something went wrong, but at the end of the day, it still ended up being a positive experience for a customer.
Well, I have a hard time remembering any situations at McDonald Containers where we struck out. I think that we’ve may have gone to a full count a couple times and may have only been able to get an infield hit out of it.
We want to always get a hit on the first pitch and if we sometimes swing and miss, let us know and we will try to hit it out of the park with the second swing.
Hey, visit us at www.mcdonaldcontainers.com and let me know how the game is going from where you’re sitting.