A new roof on a home is no small project, but after writing checks to roofing companies every time it rained, we had no choice. We did our research, chose a company with a great reputation and got things going, but here's my point. If you don't follow-through on your promises, then no matter how good a job you do, your reputation will suffer and future business will eventually be effected.
- Timing: They started the project almost two weeks later than they promised.
- Details: They didn't pay attention to details. At one point after removing one section of tile on the roof, they decided not to cover it overnight. I called their foreman and questioned the decision. I was told, "You should be okay, they left the layer under the tile." Well, it poured that night and we had two serious leaks at opposite ends of the area they left exposed! If the sealing layer under the tile was good, we wouldn't have needed a new roof in the first place!
- Follow Through: Their foremen came out to review the damage when a set of shelves in a closet pulled away from a water-logged wall after one of the leaks. He agreed to have a drywall guy come out and do the repairs, minor painting and reinstall the shelves. Three weeks later I had to call him to remind him nobody had shown up yet.
- And the wait continues: When I called last week I asked to have them go over the perimeter of the house one more time with their magnets. I stepped on a nail that required a Tetanus shot. I've got a slow leak in one tire on my car that I'm betting is one of their nails and I've picked up two more nails and one three inch screw in the area where the dog goes in and out of the garage. They finally got somebody to fix the leak damage, but we're still waiting for the clean up.
We live in a relatively small community. My wife is in the Women's Club. Had they done a great job, we both would have told the world. All of the homes in this development have Mediterranean style tile roofs and based on the age of the community, so many of them are going to need replacement over the next few years. This is a potential gold mine for new business.
Although they did a great job on the roof itself, there's no excuse for the lousy follow-through.
With every client you've got an opportunity to build the relationship and in turn, secure business for the future. No matter how small the issue, follow-up with every client as quickly as possible. Look for ways to resolve problems quickly so they don't get blown out of proportion and become business blockers for future clients.
The complaining customer represents a huge opportunity for more business."