Where are you investing?


Some time ago I visited the London Eye. It gives you a unique view of the capital.

I’d expected the attraction to be really busy – and it was! We had a voucher, but no one seemed to know to which desk we were supposed to go to redeem it. Eventually, I found the right desk and we took the ride and the obligatory photos.

Customer service was very poor – not enough staff, not enough signage and not enough training for the staff that were there.

On that same trip, we had lunch at a restaurant run by a Michelin-starred chef. Service was first class and the food was excellent, but for me, the whole experience was tainted when the bill arrived with service included and space for an extra gratuity!

I asked the waiter to take off the service charge so that I could choose how much to tip, but his immediate reaction was to tell me that I should have complained earlier!

I struggled to get him to understand that I was happy with the service but wanted to determine for myself how much I thought it was worth.

Both experiences were excellent, but both were let down by the customer service and I would not recommend either.

Both businesses have invested heavily – Wikipedia tells me the London Eye cost £70m and I don’t think there is such a thing as a low-cost rental in Chelsea – but both have lost sight of the need to delight every customer.

If you run customer satisfaction surveys, perhaps the most important customers are those who used to buy from you but no longer do so. Find out what changed – just as you would with a team member leaving, you would do an exit interview. You may be surprised to find it was something really small that caused the change.

A satisfied customer is only one poor experience away from being dissatisfied. Are you investing enough in customer service, or just focused on the internal workings of your business?

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