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Strict Standards: Declaration of Walker_CategoryDropdown::start_el() should be compatible with Walker::start_el(&$output) in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/classes.php on line 1442

Strict Standards: Redefining already defined constructor for class wpdb in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/wp-db.php on line 306

Deprecated: Assigning the return value of new by reference is deprecated in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/cache.php on line 103

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Strict Standards: Declaration of Walker_Comment::start_lvl() should be compatible with Walker::start_lvl(&$output) in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/comment-template.php on line 1266

Strict Standards: Declaration of Walker_Comment::end_lvl() should be compatible with Walker::end_lvl(&$output) in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/comment-template.php on line 1266

Strict Standards: Declaration of Walker_Comment::start_el() should be compatible with Walker::start_el(&$output) in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/comment-template.php on line 1266

Strict Standards: Declaration of Walker_Comment::end_el() should be compatible with Walker::end_el(&$output) in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/comment-template.php on line 1266

Strict Standards: Redefining already defined constructor for class WP_Dependencies in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/class.wp-dependencies.php on line 31

Strict Standards: Redefining already defined constructor for class WP_Http in /homepages/40/d130640441/htdocs/Blog/wp-includes/http.php on line 61

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Consistency Counts! | Insight Edge
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Consistency Counts!

Posted by admin on August 18, 2010 under Customer Focus, Operational Performance, Process Improvement |

Business performance excellence relies on performance consistency - consistency in process execution, as well as consistency in communication. In order to accurately predict and achieve your revenue, market share or other goals, executives must be able to rely on reasonably predictable levels of organizational performance.

The same holds true with communications – both internal and external. A clear, consistent message must be presented to internal stakeholders (employees, partners) so everyone understands what is expected. Perhaps more important, however, is the communication messages sent to your marketplace – customers, potential customers, and competitors. Particularly in these hyper-communicative times, consistent communication is critical to cut through all the noise in the marketplace. A small slip in consistency can make all the difference in gaining and keeping customers, impacting revenue and market share.

Let me give you a couple of real-world examples – both of these situations happened to me last week, and on the same day!

I needed to have some work done on my car. Now, I am pretty mechanically inclined and often like to do the work on my car. This time, however, I just didn’t feel like taking on this particular project. Additionally, there was some other work that I wanted to have done at the same time. So…. I called my local Mazda dealer to obtain a quote on the bigger piece of work. I was transferred to the Service Department and spoke with a gentleman about the work I wanted performed. He quoted me $110.00, plus tax and the environmental fee – “about $115.00”, he said.

That seemed pretty reasonable, but I didn’t make the appointment on the spot. Two days later I made the appointment, and arrived the following day to have the work done. When I checked in for the appointment, the Service Agent printed the estimate – they were going to charge me $160.00 for the work! I mentioned that I had received a quote a couple of days prior, and the Agent actually told me I was wrong, and that I couldn’t have spoken with anyone because no man worked in the Service Department! She even expected me to have the name of the person with whom I had spoken! (Do you ask the name of everyone you speak with at a store so you can justify your conversation later???)

The inconsistency in communication between the phone quote and behavior at the Service Department cost that dealership a sale – a sale of about $225.00.

Later that same day, I decided to have lunch at my local Domino’s Pizza shop. I didn’t want to have pizza because of the bread, but according to the menu there were pasta dishes available. The menu showed several photos of the various pasta dishes – pasta in an au gratin-style dish – for a price of $5.99. That seemed like a pretty good deal, and just what  I wanted – no bread. Well, wasn’t I surprised when the counter clerk charged me $6.99 (plus tax) for the meal, explaining that their prices on the menu were wrong! Can you imagine the prices being wrong on the menu?

The next surprise came when I received my order – a huge bread bowl filled with the pasta I ordered – not at all what I expected from the menu photos and item description. While I did walk away with the meal, the inconsistency here in communication regarding the product and its price was a big surprise. Will I think twice before going back there? You bet – there are lots of other options for lunch, and without the surprises.

Remember, consistency in communication is critical in setting expectations – of employees, partners, customers and others. Be sensitive to the communications in your organization – they could be impacting your overall performance much more than you think!

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