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« Good enough | Main | Spanish soccer bloggers wanted... »

The thing about the wind

Windsurfing I just had some great windsurfing lessons (no, that's not me--the only thing I had in common with this guy is that we were both upside down). I can tell you that windsurfing is very easy... except for the wind.

The wind makes it tricky, of course. It's not particularly difficult to find and rent great equipment, and the techniques are fairly straightforward. What messes the whole plan up is the fact that the wind is unpredictable. It'll change exactly when you don't want it to.

Just the other day I read a riff that reminded me that the same thing is true about customer service (it would be a lot easier if it weren't for the customers). Then I realized that every single function of an organization has a wind problem.

Accounting would be easy if every incoming report was accurate and on time. Sales would be easy if it weren't for the prospects not buying from you all the time. Marketing would be easy if every prospect and customer thought the way you do...

Here's the good news: the fact that it's difficult and unpredictable is the best thing that's happened to you all day. Because if it were any other way, there'd be no profit in it. The reason people bother to go windsurfing is that the challenge makes it interesting. The driving force that gets people to pay a specialist is because their disease is unpredictable or hard to diagnose. The reason we're here is to solve the hard problems.

The next time you're tempted to vilify a particularly obnoxious customer or agency or search engine, realize that this failed interaction is the best thing that's happened to you all day long. Without them, you'd be easily replaceable.

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Listed below are links to weblogs that reference The thing about the wind:

» Customer Experience would be easy if it wasn't for customers... from Customerspective
I always understood that it can be difficult to please a customer, but I never [Read More]

» Hard is good from Sparkplug 9 >> bizhack
OK, its Seth Godin day at bizhack again. In case youre not aware, its really, really good to have an incredibly hard job. Even when it sucks. Heres why: . . . the fact that its difficult and unpredictable is the bes... [Read More]

» Tendency of the wind from Breeze Debris
Testing the HaloScan trackbacking system with a post by Seth Godin on change,unpredictability and rising to the challenges we shall boldy face! Life is worth living no matter what situation you are in. I also learned that he and I share the same birt... [Read More]

» why are you here? from ntgr8
To me, problems are like dust: they\'re everywhere and as soon as you\'ve cleaned up one problem, you\'ll find more somewhere else. Problems are part of an abundance economy - they are in infinite supply and they are never far away. That\'s why I am a ... [Read More]

» Customer From Hell from Entrepreneur Blog
Seth Godin gives us a great reason to send a big thank you gift to your least favorite customer today. Customers who always pay us short and late, make us re-do our work to make it uglier, less efficient or what have you play an important part in the w... [Read More]

» Motivation from Svenster.BLOG
..kann vielleicht der ein oder ander aus diesem Blogeintrag von Seth Godin ziehen: [Read More]

» Customer Experience would be easy if it wasnt for customers from Standing Out In The Crowd
I always understood that it can be difficult to please a customer, but I never gave much thought about why. Seth Godin has some curious insights though on that matter in two of his recent blog entries: What People Want and The Thing About the Wind. My ... [Read More]

« Good enough | Main | Spanish soccer bloggers wanted... »