Not long ago, an optician customer began to notice a consistent problem with prism in our freeform product. The deviations were only around a two to three degrees and maybe .25 diopters. His patients hadn’t noticed, but the fact that he was seeing the problem only in freeform, and that it was occurring consistently made him uneasy. He brought the problem to our attention and we began to look into it.
We had no other complaints nor were we seeing anything on our end. But this optician, like so many of our customers, is among the best at what he does and we respect his expertise. He demands perfection not only because he is accountable to the doctor, but he wants his customers to have the best possible vision (and look good doing it).
So we had challenge. This is what get us up in the morning.
We had just purchased the AR Dual Lens Mapper and saw an opportunity to run it though its paces. We used the lens mapper to analyze his Rxs and troubleshoot our processes. We changed our polish, swapped out our cutting bits, and made minute adjustments to our generator. We even processed a set of test lenses and sent them to Germany for analysis.
After three months of troubleshooting and our customer trying other labs, the issue had improved, but remained unresolved. To cover all his bases, the optician sent his B&L lensmeter out for refurbishment. Adjustments were made to the lensmeter and from that point on his problems cleared up.
The optician called, told us about his lensmeter, and apologized.
We refused his apology and thanked him.
No matter the outcome, his complaint and especially his willingness to work with us to get it sorted out, enabled us to improve our process, become better at what we do, and ultimately provide better service to our customers that demand more. In doing so, we earned the trust of a valued customer.
The point of all this is not to brag, but to show how the part of your job that can be the most difficult, customer dissatisfaction, can be the most beneficial to your business. Complaints let you know your customer still cares and wants to do business with you. Most people are reluctant to complain and would rather just take their business elsewhere. Look at a complaint as found gold. In fact, encourage customers to complain, let them know you are open to it and want their feedback, then seize the opportunities to become even better at what you do. Yes, there are people that live to complain and will never be happy. Often, it is better to rid these people from your business (or life). But, don’t let yourself become so jaded that you can’t find and appreciate the gifts that come in the form of complaints. While we strive for no complaints, we are grateful for our customers that take the time to let us know how we can improve.