I’ve been travelling a lot lately. There was a trip to the Orient followed by two trips to Western Canada to spend time with customers, including many of our distributors. The air travel portion of these trips made me think a lot about customer service – or more accurately – how to get – and give – good customer service.
I’m a member of Air Canada’s Altitude million-mile program and as a result I get some special attention and great perks like express check in and no checked baggage fees. In this case it’s not membership, but rather loyalty that has its benefits. The truth is that there’s a snowball kind of effect to loyalty and benefits. Increased loyalty brings more benefits, which in turn makes me even more loyal. That’s one of the reasons I went from being an Elite to Super Elite. So, I’ve figured out that one of the ways to get great customer service is to be a very loyal customer.
Over many years of flying, I’ve also come to realize that the airlines that offer the best service are the ones that are hungriest for passengers. While Delta is probably the most successful major airline today, ten years ago they were hurting. During that rise to the top its seemed like they knew they had to work harder and when I flew Delta, I got better service. But once an airline reaches a certain measure of success, there’s a kind of complacency that settles in and you just can’t get the same kind of attention. While I understand why these things happen, it has always struck me as a less than perfect way of doing business. Outstanding customer service should be a core value of any business, whether they are number one or one hundred in their industry.
All of which brings me to our number one focus at Algood – Customer Service. While it is our pleasure to pay special attention to our best customers, we are always looking for ways to be better able to help all our customers succeed. We have been giving a great deal of thought to service lately and here’s what our customers can count on.
Outstanding Product Quality – Using the ISO methodology we have re-examined and in some cases enhanced many of our manufacturing processes. We track our performance diligently and we are proud to report that 99% of orders shipped meet the specifications provided and are delivered on time. That’s as close to perfect service as you can get.
New Product Releases – We have a number of new products or product updates that will be released over the next couple of months. Most of these have been developed in response to customer needs or requests. Look out for our new ProTech Sizes, Flat Free Wheels, Pneumatics with Precision Ball Bearings and Zero Gravity Spring Loaded.
Distributor Networks – As I said earlier, much of my travel has been to spend time with our distributors and see how we can help them be better suppliers and problem solvers. I spend most of my time asking questions and listening carefully. As a result, we’re introducing some new programs that will make it easier for distributors – and their salespeople – find the right products to meet their customer’s needs. If you want to know more about these programs or have an idea about how we can help you, please be in contact.
At Algood, we may not have a million caster program, but we do believe that continuously improving customer service – for our most loyal customers as well as our first timers – is the most direct path to future success.