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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?

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