customer service, customer satisfaction

By August Turak

In business we’re forever looking for magic bullets. But when times are tough it means getting back to basics. These lessons from Life 101 will make you, your employees and your business indispensable to your customers.

1. Someone is always watching. When we cut corners not only do we shortchange our customers but we insult their intelligence as well.

2. If it isn’t worth doing well don’t do it at all. We are much better off doing a few things well than throwing our hats at a lot of things.

3. Get outside the box. Don’t stick to a job description; add value wherever you can. Not only will that attitude provide customer satisfaction, but you’ll also pick up some valuable skills in the process.

4. Solve a problem. Nothing will give you a greater sense of personal satisfaction then helping a customer overcome a challenge and solving their problem.

5. Make friends. If you treat your customers like friends more often than not, they will be there for you as well through good times and bad.

6. Always do what you say you are going to do. Deliver on every promise, and build trust with your customers.

7. Excellence for the sake of excellence. People who get sheer satisfaction from always doing their best work seem to always succeed. Do your best work and more customers and referrals will surely follow.

I’ve had the pleasure of working with many MBAs throughout my career, and I would be the first to admit that our business schools and undergraduate business programs impart many useful skills. However, one area where they fall woefully short is teaching the “people skills” that every businessperson needs. When managing customer expectations, success increasingly relies on our ability to lead through lessons from Life 101.

© 2013 August Turak

August Turak is a successful entrepreneur, corporate executive, award winning writer and author of Business Secrets of the Trappist Monks: One CEO’s Quest for Meaning and Authenticity (Columbia Business School Publishing; July 2013). He has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Fast Company, Selling Magazine, the New York Times, and Business Week, and is a popular leadership contributor at His website is