Make Sure the Air is Cold

August 22, 2011


We get hired to do something. We do it. We are courteous and responsive, but we do it and move on. That’s the way business works. Right?

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That model works perfectly as long as everything works, well, perfectly. What happens when the result is not what you — or the client — expected?

I recently got the air conditioning fixed in my daughter’s car. We took it to the usual, trusted shop known for its honesty, quick response and reasonable prices. They had just replaced the compressor, but it still wasn’t cold. I took it back, they did something minor, tested it and said it was fixed.

Their tests may have said it was fixed, but it still wasn’t cold.

I took it back again, and they discovered that some vent that controls the hot air coming into the car was broken, allowing the 100-degree weather to mix with the cold air from the a/c unit.

It took me three trips to get the problem solved. Each time, they would test the air-conditioning system, and it would show that everything was working perfectly. But they never bothered to sit in the car. Just a couple minutes of that stifling hot air blowing in your face would tell you that something was still not right.

They had done the technical part of the job correctly, but did not check to see what the result was. They didn’t make sure that what I was really paying for — cold air inside the car — had been achieved.

For those of us who provide a service, our jobs don’t end with the delivery of our product. They end when we have confirmed that what our client really hired us to do is actually done.

We need to take a minute to sit in the car and make sure the air is cold. It is always better for us to sweat than our clients.

Dave Fiore is the Chief Content Officer at Fiore Communications. You can follow him on Twitter and say hi.



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  1. Ralph Tish says:

    August 26, 2011 @ 10:39 am

    Good lesson and thanks for sharing it with us Dave and hopefully practice the same in our service business…
    Ralph 🙂

  2. steve carron says:

    August 26, 2011 @ 11:03 am

    Thanks for sharing a photo of the shop owner.