You’re right…The right person…

You’re right…they’re wrong?

Ever wonder who came up with the notion that the customer was always right? Maybe it was an unhappy or “difficult” customer who saw it as being in their interest. Or maybe it was some desk jockey who’d never actually dealt with an unreasonable customer. Either way, like some other mantras, while not inaccurate, it’s not infallibly true either.

The fact is customers are regularly wrong. Yet theirs is the only vote that counts. So, the challenge is dealing with those occasionally bogus beliefs and coming out of the situation with our shirt and feelings not in tatters. That’s where the real skill comes in.

Take the situation of complaints of increased costs in that on-premise laundry. You know it’s due to underloaded wash wheels. But they think you’re the guilty party. You could just tell them they’re mistaken, but that will almost certainly result in even more push back.

So you take the take the time to load two side by side wheels running the same wash formula – but with one fully loaded and one not, to demonstrate a solution to lowering those costs.

Regardless of the wacky customer belief you’re facing, correcting it and emerging with a happier user is always the goal. And to the extent we can achieve that happy outcome, the easier life is.


The right person…For the job

Sometimes the wrong person is chosen to lead. And if you’re reporting to that “mistake” it can be a pretty rough way to go. Occasionally that situation can be so dire that the only real option is to look elsewhere.

But in most cases the situation – and even if they really are the wrong person for the job, the problem will eventually reverse itself. However that fix might be later than sooner. So that means adapting to it – for at least a while. And that requires stepping back and cooling our resentment.

If we’re walking around with a chip on our shoulder whatever that person says or does we’ll see it (and maybe distort it?) through that lens. Alternatively if we cut them a bit of slack, two things can happen. First our blood pressure will definitely decline and just maybe they might grow into the job and turn out to be the right choice.

Either way, life’s too short to let an unpleasant situation fester. If we allow a corrosive mindset to continue, it will only get worse. And that can lead to an outcome that in the end takes us right back to that first option mentioned above.