As the New York Times reports, volunteers from a company’s community are helping Verizon wireless customers for free. By the looks of it, it seems that many companies, from startup to VCs and large are taking this new tactic all the way to the bank.
People love being helpful and there isn’t always time to meet new people by going to networking events. The businesses that can help lower the barriers to entry to make conversations among customers happen, win. This is especially true and relatively easy to do online.
What if customers were the service? seems to be playing into the reality of business today - fewer company resources allocated to helping customers and those resources being stretched and sometimes showing a bad attitude.
It looks like recovering from a bad attitude involves people other than company employees to take care of business. It may come down to flexibility.
Taylor himself asks the question of American cellphone carriers in one of his posts “If the cell phone world is so perfect in Japan, why is it so fundamentally flawed here in the States? Why is it so rigid, straight forward and uncompromising? Why as consumers haven't we demanded the flexibility that the Japanese cell phone industry exudes?”
Volunteers may help companies bridge to new models but they’re not off the hook quite yet. To recover from a bad attitude in customer service, companies will need to actually relearn to embrace their customers.
Valeria Maltoni | Conversation Agent