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ARTICLESManagement & Service

Q = G(P+P+P)

This reads more like an equation. As a matter of fact it is an equation. If you have a GOOD combination of PRODUCT + PEOPLE + PRICE you have to arrive at QUALITY.

Quality that is born from a good PRODUCT.

Quality that comes from good PEOPLE in the company

Quality that comes in a competitive PRICE

Will you go to a restaurant where you receive a princely experience from the staff and the price unbelievable but the food is mediocre? NO.

Your PRODUCT should be the best. How can it be the best?

Imagine a scenario where the product at the outset was a creation of ones thoughts, ambitions and dreams. It was your baby. It was your invention. To you this was great. Having prided on your creation you introduce it in the market. You now have buyers who will try out your product. From those buyers who tried, there are some that liked it and some that did not. Let’s look at the ones who did not like it. From this lot there are a few who on their own give suggestions or complain. There are others who need to be probed. We will deal with the probing kind later. We now have the lot that liked it and some that will like it subject to certain changes. The ones who have given suggestions have told you what needs to be done to make it suit their requirements. They are giving you advice. They are helping you. The message is written large on the wall. All you have to do is read it, understand and work on it. Presume you improvise and put your product back in the market. You will now have more than some that liked your product. If suggestions and feedback can help you improve your product and build a customer base, then it is time to look up those customers who have been non suggestive and quite. If probed, their feedback will help us improve further. Survey and market research maybe your answer to elicit more suggestions. This in turn is going to help us improve our product, evolve and maybe diversify. We are in the process where our product is now trying to match customer expectations. We are on the road to be a QUALITY PRODUCT.

Suppose you go to buy a car that you know is good in all respects and fits your requirements. To top it, it has an attractive price tag. Unfortunately you do not get the expected response from the staff. While you still want to buy the car what would be your impression about the company.

Having worked towards a quality product, can it sell itself?

This can be answered with two basic facts.

• A product cannot sell itself.

• The end user of your product is people.

Since the end users are people in the garb of customers you need GOOD PEOPLE in the garb of employees to service these customers efficiently such that they are not only happy with your product but would love to deal with the company as well. Your product now needs a face. It requires the human touch. You need employees to introduce the product to the customer. You need employees who love to deal with customers - Employees who can understand customer requirements. Employees who have the art of helping customers buy rather than sell to them - Employees who can be friendly to customer - Employees who can smile on the phone - Employees who can get the job done yesterday - Employees with commitment - Employees who are focused. Employees who can make a customer feel comfortable while dealing with our organization. - Employees who can make the customer come back for more - Employees who can network through the customer. Phew! I think you got the point.

You can develop a quality product but without a good set of employees it would not be possible to successfully reach it to the customers. All your employees, be it front line, back-up office, after sales, accounts, technical, reception etc need to have customer focus such that your customer would experience the same quality of service at all times and in all areas of his dealings with your office. He should without a second thought come to your office for his requirement. He should be proud of his relationship with your organization. He should direct others to your office. This should be an ongoing exercise that ensures growth in customers and business. All this has to be done by the people of the company – top to bottom with no exception. There has to be a uniform and positive approach to the customer. If you can reach this state of customer consciousness you then possess a team of QUALITY PEOPLE.

You are the only one selling this branded industrial tool and have a great sales force to look after the customers. Studying the market condition you set a price that is 25% more than the competing brands. Would you still buy the product?

Yes, if you do not have a choice.

No, if you have the time to wait and get it from the next town at a better price.

No, if you can compromise with the competing brand.

PRICE should be just about right for the customer to afford. It should be such that he experiences value for his money. We should ensure that he does not feel short changed or pinched in the bargain. We also need to keep in mind the market conditions. We must know at what price the competition is offering the same product. We need to equate value in terms of returns. We need to study demand/supply. By the way lets not forget our profit. (That’s what the business is all about). We need profit for the organization. We have salaries and rent to be paid beyond various other overheads. We need to grow and diversify. All this requires capital. We need profit to run the business.

Keeping all this in mind price should be poised such that is affordable to the organization and the consumer. Irrespective of the product, exclusivity, proximity and other buying trends do not overcharge under any circumstances. If the customer loves your product price should be set that is within his reach. You do not give him an opportunity to come with excuses not to buy. On the contrary he does not have a choice but, to buy. You must ensure that you have the best PRICE in the market.

While price plays an important role in the consumer’s decision to buy a product, it is more important that the product be good and the people driving the product be excellent. Also while price and product could have limitations, there are no limitations in the manner your employees sell it or service the customer. After all customer service is an art that can only be performed by people.

To conclude, for something to spell QUALITY it requires the right proportion of

GOOD (PRODUCT + PEOPLE + PRICE)

Q = G(P+P+P)

 
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