The dangerous power of expectations


The problem with promises, implicit or tacit, is that they create expectations.  So what?

Here’s the problem with that:

As business owners we make promises, whether you want to or not.  When we make a promise we are creating the future for other people.  People come and expect that something will happen within a reasonable delay and with respect and a fair price.

I have stopped using stores for numerous reasons, all related to failed expectations.

One of the local sporting stores wanted to charge me for warentee support for a product that they sell and carried a lifetime guarentee!


I had to chase after the regional distributor and then finally the manufacturer in Germany to get warranty service from my local vendors.  It took me almost two years of intermittent effort to get a lifetime guarantee honoured.

This is exactly the opposite of what we expect of a company that offers a strong warranty on their products.  No one said to me when I purchased my product that the service would be fast and easy.  They just said that they would replace them if they broke due to manufacturers defects.  But our expectations turn around something will happen within a reasonable delay and with respect and a fair price.

So the only way for us to satisfy our clients is to allow them live fulfilled expectations.  So it is up to us to manage the things that we can.

We have to justify:

  • the time it takes
  • the price
  • and the relationships

If you can manage those things then you will be able to have happy clients with fulfilled expectations. They will thus have nothing but good things to say about them because you held up your end of the bargain.

Be proactive and control the promises and turn any tacit agreements into voiced agreements so that people won’t be surprised by their own expectations being unfulfilled!

Good luck and take control.

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Customer Satisfaction By Designing Satisfied Clients

If you like selling things, which you should in business, you want to make a business that is there for clients. One of the things that I know that I do when I set up a business is I set it up for myself. This is a mistake because you are on the other side of the wall. You need to break through the fourth wall and think like your audience. You can’t set up the perfect production process without confiding the people that are going to buy what you have to sell.

So we have to stop and think. We engage in a design process to make our business revolve around their clients and their expectations, or the jobs that those people have to get done. I want to have something to do in the car on the way to work…I’ll buy a milkshake; I want to be respected in my neighbourhood…I’ll buy a lawnmower; I want to be warm when I run…Marino wool undergarments!

It takes an understanding of what our customers want and what they need to be able to accomplish. When we have completely integrated this knowledge into our business model then we have a business that is set to go gangbusters because we are meeting our customers expectations and, today, even exceeding them!

This is the approach of the social age.  By being what your clients want they will talk about you and then they will promote you and you will succeed in a more organic and enduring fashion!

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