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I've done some consulting for a furniture and office design company
here, and the president of the company was having exactly the kind
of response problems people have been posting. His name, address,
e-mail address, phone number are all over the company information,
and he ahd been following up every sale or installation with a
letter. (He would have called but he knows how intrusive that can be,
and he also didn't always have a contact person's name at the site.)
When he asked my advice, I first thought about business reply cards,
but that wasn't the key to a high-level response, without direct
human contact. Now with every job, the "crew chief" in charge of
the installation physically hands the reply card to the contact
person. The card includes a short letter (etc) from the president
pledging customer satisfaction, and the mail-back part has a clear
checklist of ways in which the customer should be satisfied.
It works beautifully. Every card's checklist is translated into
numbers and graphed (both for the individual team and for the
whole company). The workers see their results; the cards are
put up as well as the graphs so that handwritten comments are
also available. The workers really like to see their results and
take increasing pride in their work.
This method may not be possible for some of the people and
companies on this listserv, I understand; but if there is any way
to reinforce the person-to-person commitment to good work, I'm
all for it.
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