And I know we struggle with infusing the same pride into our employees. To them, it's "just a job" but to us it's our life. There's a gazillion management books (and I love reading them) on ways to create engaged employees who take pride in their work.
Have you ever thought about how to instill the same pride in your customers? Wouldn't it be great if your customers were proud to say they worked with you? Or proud that they used your product? And bragged about it or flaunted it!
Some companies market themselves on this very principle - to evoke status and pride within their customers. Rolex, BMW, and David Yurman are a few examples of high end products that people are proud to have. Recently I was interviewed for a SmartMoney article about the Martha Stewart brand being sold in J.C. Penney stores. Experts argue that if customers have confidence in what they are buying then they don't need a brand name.
Here are products and services I'm proud to use and why:
- My dentist and physician. (They are different people!). I've been going to both of them for 15 years. Both have had the same hygienist/nurse the entire time. Both doctors are involved in the community and I read about the philanthropic things they do in local publications. This makes me proud.
- Kwik Kar Oil Change. One time I went in for a State Inspection and I didn't have my current insurance card. It was because I had been in a car accident and just gotten my car back without replacing all my glove box contents. The mechanic called my insurance company and verified my insurance was current and then proceed to inspect my car. This saved me tons of time and made me proud.
- Scott Tissue. I can always find a coupon to use when buying it to save $.50 - $1.00 plus they participate in Box Tops for Education, which means they donate $.10 for every package I buy to my kids' school. This makes me proud.
Instill pride in your customers by:
- Being involved in your community
- Going way out of your way for them
- Providing a good deal on price
- Showing social responsibility