A few years ago Sam Walton, founder of the biggest retailer in the world, opened a new training programme for Walmart employees, and made sure he took the first slot in every training session.
Most people expected Sam to make a speech about the history and the values of the company, about sales or customer service. But instead Sam shared a short, simple fact.
“I’m the kind of person who goes to a restaurant, sits at the table and patiently waits, whilst the waiter does everything but taking my order.
I’m the kind of person who goes to a shop and waits in silence, whilst the employee behind the counter finishes the private conversation with the colleague, before taking my payment.
I’m the kind of person who goes to a gas station and never buzzes, but waits patiently whilst the employee finishes his newspaper read.
I’m the kind of person who explains to a supplier his urgency on getting a specific product, and does not complain after receiving it 3 weeks later.
I’m really the kind of person who enters any commercial establishment and seems to be begging for attention, for a smile, for the employee to do me a favour.
And now you must be thinking that I’m just a nice, calm, relaxed, quiet, patient kind of person. But you are wrong!
You know who I am? I’m the customer who will never come back.
And then I have fun. Watching these companies spend millions of dollars, in marketing and advertisement, in order to make me come back to them. When actually I was there already, and all they had to do was a simple, cheap and easy thing: treat me with a little courtesy.
There is only one boss: THE CLIENT. And he can fire everyone in the company. From the employee to the Chief Executive, simply by taking his money somewhere else”