I Love You More than My Dog:
Five Decisions that Drive Extreme Customer Loyalty in Good Times and Bad.
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Earn the Right to Grow and Prosper:
The 5 decisions that create beloved companies and drive explosive business growth.
Hundreds of businesses have customers who admire them, but only an elite few have true advocates— passionate, loyal, vocal fans—who rave about them to anyone who will listen.
Beloved companies create an indelible bond with customers. They become a part of their lives. Their devoted customers grow their business for them; telling everyone they know on twitter, Facebook, chat rooms and hundreds of websites every day that these companies are worthy of their business.
What is behind achieving beloved status? Two years of research led me to this: these companies earn the right to grow and prosper because of the anguish, thought and purpose that they put into decision making. The actions that come from their decisions set them apart. Beloved companies weave their humanity into every decision they make, connecting who they are as a people with the decisions they make in how in running their business. As a result, they earn not just loyal buyers, but passionate, vocal fans.
Why Jeanne Wrote I Love You More than My Dog
Five decisions comprise the backbone of how these companies conduct themselves in business. At a fork in the road when decisions are made, these five decisions informs and motivates their conduct, creating a seismic shift from mere business to beloved company.
Decision 1: Beloved Companies Decide to believe.
“We trust our customers. We trust those who serve them.”
Beloved companies make the decision to believe, both in their customers and their employees. They suspend cynicism in their relationships, and as a result, they are freed from the extra rules, polices and layers of bureaucracy that create a barrier between them and their customers. Beloved companies understand that most people strive to do the right thing, and they decide to believe that this is also true for their customers and employees.
Decision 2: Beloved Companies Decide with clarity of purpose.
“We are clear about the purpose we serve in our customers’ lives.”
Beloved companies take the time to be clear about their unique promise for their customer’s lives. Beloved companies realize that clarity of purpose guides choices and unites the organization. It elevates people’s work from merely executing tasks to delivering experiences that customers will want to repeat and share with others. Businesses across every industry prosper when they decide with clarity of purpose and spread that clarity across the entire organization.
Decision 3: Beloved Companies Decide to be real.
“We are genuine, passionate and take the best version of ourselves to work.”
Beloved companies break down barriers between customer and company, creating a relationship between people and revel in one another’s foibles, quirks and spirit. It draws them to one another. Their humanity and authenticity is what sets beloved companies apart from all the others. They allow room for people to blend their personal instincts with their business decisions. Customers and employees gravitate to companies who decide to be real, who decide to drop the “corporate veneer” and to those that nurture the personality and spirit of their customers and employees.
Decision 4: Beloved Companies Decide to be there.
“We are in the scrimmage every day to build our operation from our customers’ perspective.”
This is about earning the right to grow, by being reliable, on your customers’ terms. Beloved companies devote more resources and more plain old work to be there for their customers. They’re in it every day to earn the right to a continued relationship with their customers. That’s the first decision they make: to be there when the customer needs them, in the manner that they need them. This is your reliability litmus test. If your customers can’t describe the consistent experience they receive from you to friends, colleagues and on social media, then you won’t earn their social media raves or recommendation to others. You can’t grow long term without the customer advocacy earned through experience reliability.
Decision 5: Beloved Companies Decide to say sorry.
“We are humble. We accept accountability. We will make it right.”
Grace and wisdom guide the beloved companies to accept accountability when the chips are down, and when things don’t go the way they planned. How a company reacts to mistakes reflects the humanity of the organization and shows its true colors more than almost any situation that might arrive. How you make your customer whole again will impact the long-term growth of your customer relationships. It is the intent and motivation that guide final outcomes when companies make mistakes that set people – and companies – apart.
How you steer your decisions and actions will impact your ability to earn the right to grow and prosper. You can earn your customers’ business by deciding how you will run yours. With every order you ship, with every person you hire, with every product you develop you have the chance to tell your customers who you are and what you value. So make a choice. Decide what you want your story to be in the marketplace.
THE DECISION IS YOURS.