As we move toward an abundance model of business, what will happen to customer service? I’m having a difficult time reconciling this with my own perception of business for a number of reasons.
I have a problem with the idea of consumerism. The idea that I must (culturally speaking) buy and buy and buy, hoarding my acquisitions and building the perfect castle with the best treasure room all working toward some mythical day when I can say “I have collected enough” and retire really doesn’t sit well with me. Primarily because this betterment of self by acquisition seems very tied into limited resource, which means if I’ve got it, someone else is deprived of it.
What will happen to this mindset when abundance takes over? Will there be a glut of acquisition, when budgetary concerns are no longer valid? Or will we level off and become communal (as opposed to communist) beings centred on contribution capital rather than material proof of worth?
Go into a store where you didn’t get your way. Where someone said no, and you pulled the “The Customer Is Always Right” card. Apologize, please, because this behaviour is an indicator of the temper tantrums our new and changing society is going through. This entitlement behaviour seems to stem from the growing pains we, as a culture, are experiencing in the divide between realizing there’s more than we can ever hope to acquire, and moving toward something markedly different.
We want to participate in our brands.
When we get shut down at a store, or when our efforts at contributing to the buy-sell process go unheeded, we get angry. The knee-jerk reaction is “I’m your customer, I’m right on the authority of: What, you’re rejecting my money?” – and this is a dangerous prospect. Part of this may legitimately come from businesses not being set up to react to customer participation. But they’re changing that, slowly and surely.
Are we, as customers, changing our behaviour to meet these innovative businesses in an acceptable middle ground? Or are we just pounding the old line and demanding satisfaction at all costs, even if it means the brands we love can’t keep their lights on because they made us happy?