It was so frustrating to him.
It was the exact same item but priced $30 higher. He had the points to get the $30 pricier item for free, but the principle of it sat on him like a burr in a saddle.
So he talked to the customer service representative. Calmly. Patiently. She said there was nothing she could do. They didn’t price match. He asked to speak to customer care, politely. She remarked, “but you can get this item for free.”
“I know,” he replied, “but points equate to dollars and this item $30 higher than if I went to your competitor. You can understand that, right? It’s tough to swallow the same item would cost $30 more.”
“Yes,” she replied, “I can understand that. Okay, we’ll drop the price.”
He emerged from his office victorious sharing his news. I agreed it was impressive and mentioned his experience showcased some impressive leadership qualities.
“You’re going to blog about this, aren’t you?” he questioned.
“Well YOU could blog about it,” I responded.
Well, there you have it. So darling, here’s the leadership lessons your telephone interaction teaches us all:
- Show respect. No matter who you’re dealing with, they deserve your respect and polite engagement.
- Appreciate the value. Here, even though the item would have technically been “free,” it would have cost him the equivalent of $30 more in points for the exact same item offered elsewhere for less.
- Negotiate. You never will know if you can get a better deal if you don’t ask.
- Make it relatable. “Can you understand that?” Such a great leadership question. You’re asking if the person on the other end appreciates value as much as you do. Make sure it’s a question folks can relate to, but basic questions appealing to human decency, appreciating value, and understanding a predicament can build a bridge to common ground where far more can be accomplished.
Thanks for the leadership life lesson, babe!