The CHI Benchmark

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12th September, 2022

CHI ~ the circulating life energy that in Chinese philosophy is thought to be inherent in all things; in traditional Chinese medicine the balance of negative and positive forms in the body is believed to be essential for good health.

Today, the CHI we are discussing is not only for our good health but good health of our business. We are talking about – ‘Customer Happiness Index’

Nowadays, most businesses and most business people tend to operate at average.  

Walk into a restaurant and no one smiles, the room’s a mess, the food is mediocre, the details are undone and there’s zero element of utter surprise. 

Hop onto most airplanes, Or observe most retailers. All average, No wow. Underwhelming passion, Bankrupt innovation, Most businesses are just going about their jobs, doing their chores rather than satisfying or pleasing the customer. Just a bunch of companies copying everyone else and playing not to lose versus aiming to win. 

Nobody goes out of the way to help or attend to a customer. A lot of customer care desks will have a contemptuous look and will look down at you with, “You ignorant Fool” kind of a disdainful and unwelcome look, that you feel almost scared to approach them.

You have a complaint, The customer care call centres will keep on asking you to punch numbers to no avail.

In this world of automation, we seem to have lost the personal touch and just the slight empathy  that every complaint needs, thus leaving a huge vacuum for a ‘caring’ and ‘client first’ kind of business to step in.

This leaves a gorgeous chance for some businesses to stand for mastery and customer delight – To dazzle by acumen and skill, To leave your customers with tears in their eyes by the exceptional excellence that they model. 

Ask yourself, introspect; 

Do you go out of your way to please a customer? 

Do you say a kind word, give a sympathetic ear, lend your shoulder to your client.

Do you anticipate a requirement of your client and try and fulfill it before they ask for it?

Do you empathise, do you listen to their demand, however small and ignorant? 

Do you sulk on a repeat demand or do you service it with a smile? 

Do you provide more value than you receive? 

For you it may be routine but for them it may mean the world. 

I had a wonderful experience on a recent holiday. While staying at a leading hotel chain, I was pleasantly surprised to find a print copy of my Favourite business and daily newspaper at my door. There were extra Tea bags of my favourite flavour of tea. This was all possible because I used to be a member of their ‘Club’ many years back. Even though I was no longer a member, on Check in, my preferences popped up in their record and they decided to provide me this extra. It didn’t cost them a lot but made me feel special. What do you think will be my preferred hotel chain during my next travel, and I have shared this anecdote with hundreds of my friends and colleagues, thus also providing them free publicity.

Corporates would do better to adopt the  CHI or Customer Happiness Index as the benchmark rather than the sheer numbers comparison for the evaluation of their services.

Please remember: a job’s only a job when seen as a job. See your job as your craft  and your chance to leave your mark on the world.

Aim for mastery, adopt the CHI benchmark for your business & stay blessed forever.