Happy customers tell friends. Happy customers use the phrase “I LOVE doing business with [Insert your name here].” These customers spend more with you, are willing to give you honest and useful feedback, and make your employees feel good when they talk to them. Happy customers usually hang around long enough to become loyal customers. Companies with loyal customers grow faster than companies with lost customers.
My first book was called “Winning at Customer Retention, 101 Ways to Keep ’em Happy, Keep ’em Loyal and Keep ’em Coming Back“. Little did I know when I wrote it in 1995 that I would actually study and learn how to teach Happiness.
Happiness in business? You bet.
I know, I know, there are those who would argue – what customers want is ease not happiness, what customers want is speed and efficiency not warm fuzzy feelings, what customers want is to get in and get out quickly with their stuff.
I agree. And what makes the difference is still happiness. Why? Because for some customers ease, speed and efficiency make them happy.
When I am in heavy “travel mode” and only home for a few days, that’s what makes me happy. I need to get in to the drycleaners, drug store, doctor’s office, supermarket fast and out fast. I need to be able to find the things I want quickly (that means stop rearranging the shelves – please!) and get onto the next errand.
Of course, I love when I can get all that with a smile and a warm greeting, but what really makes me happy in those moments is getting my need for speed met. I want people to read my body language and the other nonverbal signals that indicate I am in a hurry and do their best to make it easy for me.
You see, if I can get my errands accomplished quickly that leaves time left over for a yoga class, a walk on the beach or a chat with friends.
THAT makes me a happy customer.
In the end, when the customer walks away with what they wanted – whether that is speed, friendliness, efficiency or fun – and they feel good about it, you’ve created a positive experience for them. And that’s what it’s all about – adding those positive experiences together to create a relationship with the customer that makes them want to come back again and tell their friends. Happiness. We ought to be putting more focus on it in business. (See my Return On Happiness website for the reasons why.)
The Secret Society of Happy People has thousands of members and followers and their website gives a number of good ideas for celebrating Happiness Happens this month. I highly encourage the activities and most especially during these fearful times, encourage you to get your team together to talk about what’s right, what’s bright and what’s good.
Spend the month looking for the bright spots and recognizing and acknowledging the good you (and your customers) do. Encourage people to talk about “The best things about working here”. Make a poster and hang it in the break room.
Not enough “best things”? Get to work making it a better place.
At the end of every day, make a point before leaving work to list three good things that happened that day and why. Reflect briefly on those three things and feel the positive emotion. Share them the next day in your meetings.
When the US Army, who has wholeheartedly embraced the principles of Positive Psychology in its Master Resilience Training programs does just this they call it “Hunt the Good Stuff.”
Positive emotions, like happiness, joy, serenity, excitement, curiosity, have a physical effect on our bodies.
Check out the Society’s 31 Kinds of Happiness. Positive emotions change our biochemistry, brain wave patterns and heart rhythms. Positive emotions make us smarter, healthier and more socially adept.
And, here’s the good part, happiness is contagious.
So, this being Happiness Happens Month – get out there and make some happiness happen for your customers and co-workers!
Happiness is contagious – spread it around!
PS Be sure to check out my other site www.PositivityPractices.com