(Time to read this article is about 30 seconds)
Customers hate to wait. Like it or not, we live in the world of “I want it now”. So, here are Cooper’s 4 rules of waiting:
Rule #1: Don’t make people wait. Waiting makes people feel unimportant. Implement systems, processes, physical facilities and staffing levels that reduce or eliminate ‘waiting’.
Rule #2: If you must make them wait, give them something to do that they love more than they hate waiting. Years ago, in our ‘Alive & Well’ fashion store, we offered electric reclining massage chairs for husbands and boyfriends and a pirate ship play area for kids. I walked by the ‘ship’ one day and heard a 5 year old ask his mother, “Mommy can we live here?” How could you make ‘waiting’ fun?
Rule #3: When customers are waiting, update them frequently and honestly so they know what’s going on and can make the best use of their time.
Rule #4: If you make them wait longer than they think is ‘reasonable’, or longer than you promised, give them a treat, gift or perk along with an apology. If you’re sorry (and you should be), say you’re sorry in a memorable way.
How could you make these ‘4 Rules of Waiting’ work for you?