Editorial: Prioritize satisfying customers

Jan. 17, 2013 @ 02:33 PM

Generations from not too long ago can still recall the integrity that came with certain catch phrases from our business world.

And that was before catch phrase entered our lexicon.

American made truly meant something, more than just the fact a product was produced somewhere in the 50 states. There was pride in hearing it, a solid understanding without question of getting what you paid for, production or value.

The days of keeping most things done in our boundaries are long gone. Companies have seized upon every way imaginable to turn pennies into dollars, and lots of them. We only need to look at a bill, or even a statement from the bank, to see how shareholders are profiting. Going overseas is another avenue.

Every business is unique, but many have found costs associated with taxes and exporting, or other factors such as the law and risk, are more profitable when they take it outside.

While they profit, our tax bases and unemployment absorb the blows. We scratch our heads as businesses are shuttered.

We know, in many cases, we cause companies to take it outside as well. When we should be the labor force with expertise, care and taking all due diligence for our products, we fail miserably.

Customer service still matters. And too many American companies and those with responsible leadership positions within them don’t fully grasp that idea. Nor do a good number of their employees.

Instead of attitudes for how to make it work, how to make it work better or just how to help, customer service often becomes nothing more than stone walls not only to patrons but also to their product.

As we see American industries and companies in decline, we frequently wonder what could have made it different. Too often, we’re left with an answer that reveals changes were made, alternatives were there, and poor choices led to poor results.

We have to finish the job. Working smarter and efficiently doesn’t mean shortcuts damaging the product. Finding the right people who will do the job must be a priority.

Satisfied customers still bolster assets. That’s the real bottom line.