I have said it before. I will say it again and again…as I did recently in a newsletter that one of my customer´s send to their customers.
“As suppliers we fight desperately to find new customers, to deliver what we have promised and then to give a 100 % service.
We work like eager beavers to make our customers happy. The competition is deadly and we constantly need to surpass all expectations. Failing that, there will always be competitors waiting in the wings, ready to step into the limelight.
We work magic by lifting ourselves by the hair in order to please our customers. Sometimes we really have to laugh at all curious situations that we have to address, for the sole reason that the customers need us – right now. And there we are, ready to fix whatever it is, thereby feeling immensely pleased with ourselves.
What then happens is nothing…not even a short mail with a ”thank you”, not a telephone call, not a flower for Christmas.
Let us be honest. After all it is actually the supplier who makes it possible for her customer to make better business with her customer etc.
Unfortunately we often forget to consider who our own suppliers are. We look to the front of the chain, not behind us. Maybe we ought to do that more often!
When did you last sit down over a cup of coffee with your own supplier to give some attention and positive feedback about her terrific efforts for your benefit? When did she receive an appreciative mail? An Easter egg?
By the way. How many of your potential customers does your supplier already know? Imagine a recommendation from your supplier what a wonderfully professional company you run – how much is that worth? Maybe your best customers ever are to be found in your supplier´s network?
Also – consider a moment how we prize our products and services. Are we not a little bit nicer to the most likeable of our customers? Does your supplier think that way too…?
Let me finally give praise to all hardworking suppliers doing their utmost, day and night, week after week. Thank you for all your diligent work! Thank you for sending missing spare parts by express delivery! Thank you for fixing a leak on a Saturday night! Thank you for restarting the server on a holiday! And thank you for recommending me to other customers!
Whatever would I do without you.”
So – how about spending some of your valuable vacation time thinking about whom to thank…?