Dissin' the Customer

The Cashier Con is the Monday Morning Memo from Roy Williams today. He’s talking about a trend where businesses show their disdain for their customers by taking advantage of them through sneaky offers at the cash register. You’ll recognize them. You’ll nod your head in agreement.

I’ve also noticed a trend toward simply assuming your customers are stupid. Unfortunately, this is often (wrongly) justified by the acts of a few of your customers who really are stupid. For example, it just takes a few out of the hundreds of people on a 747 to act like knuckleheads and a flight crew starts treating everyone like babies for the rest of their careers.

Laxhojo I had a 6-hour layover in Los Angeles last month before flying to Australia. I opted to get a day-rate room at a hotel near LAX to freshen up, wash some laundry (I’d already been on the road 4 days) and rest a bit. This sign was actually in the bathroom. My guess is that some years ago, some poor soul clogged the toilet with too much paper and the manager or the maintenance guy had a hissy-fit resulting in these signs. They now insult the intelligence of every customer for the mistake, misfortune or even prank of one person. Guess what? I wasn’t that person. Why are you yelling at me with your sign?

Do you have any signs, policies or procedures in your business that could be insulting to your customers? How would you know? The best course of action is to hire an outsider to come in and have a look around. We call it uncovery. It’s the only way to see yourself real.

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