What George Orwell can teach you about customer care

Have you any interest in history?

Whether you do or not, you probably didn’t escape from school without giving at least some passing consideration to the 1917 Russian Revolution.

And you wouldn’t be alone if you found it confusing.  The Tsar, then Lenin, Trotsky, & Stalin.

I well remember my own initial confusion.  Until I read a certain novel.  And then it all fell magically into place.

The book was George Orwell’s Animal Farm.  At face value it was about animals overthrowing a cruel farmer and what then transpired when the animals were in charge of themselves.  But the book was actually a skilful allegory that captured events in Russia beautifully.

One of the quotes I remember from it is that “All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others”.  The romantic, idealised view of communism was that all people should be treated fairly, workers owning the means of production, the withering away of the state, etc.  However, Orwell with the above quote captured the reality of things – that those in charge of communist states don’t think we’re all equal.

What has this got to do with your business?

Just substitute “customer” for “animal”!  Many businesses, by and large, treat their customers the same.

Huge mistake.

Imagine you’ve two customers.  One delivers you a profit.  The other delivers you a loss.

Now also imagine that the one delivering you the loss is of no strategic or long-term value.  So you’ve no factor other than P&L to consider in whether or not to retain them.

What happens if you fire that customer?

Two great things happen:

Firstly you increase your profit.

Secondly, you do less work.

Business heaven I’d call that!  It may sound too good to be true but it’s simple maths!

And that heaven is eminently possible because some customers are more equal than others!

How do you currently treat your customers?  All the same?  Or maybe you’re a ‘squeakiest wheel’ supplier as my friend James calls some people, i.e., he who shouts loudest gets your attention?

Or perhaps you treat them more systematically in a manner that reflects their relative importance to you?  In a way that will have the best impact on your bottom line?

Your decisions regarding treatment of customers can have a huge impact on your business.  Such decisions should be based on data.  Better data will produce better decisions.

Gathering that type of data is something I can help with.  You’ve to take the first step though.

And that first step?

Book a free 15-minute call with me here and let’s talk.  We’ll quickly find out if you’ve a need that I can potentially help with.

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