Some customers are shortsighted, greedy and selfish. Imbungulu (Zulu expression meaning they are donkeys).
Extend yourself a little bit and they will want a lot.
In Sgudi Snysi, a South African TV comedy sitcom, Sis May used to complain about Sdumo’s ungratefulness by saying “Umunik’ isandla ufun’ ingalo yonke.” meaning “you give him a hand, he wants the whole arm.”
Offer a client a free drink in the restaurant one night and he is angry that it’s not there the next night.
You do something special once as a bonus, they want it all the time.
The greatest challenge of winning customers and relationships is that providing remarkable service and an honest human communication will be abused by a few people who try to connect with.
You have three options:
- Put up with the complainers;
- Write off everyone; or
- Deliberately exclude and fire the ungrateful whiners (imbungulu)
Firing the customer you can’t possibly please gives you the bandwith, arms-length space and resources to warm up to and cuddle the ones that truly deserve your attention and they will repay you with referrals, applause and loyalty.
Shun your non-believers, even when you prove them wrong, instead of apologising, they will go somewhere else to complain.
No matter how good things get, chronic complainers still only see the bad, and they go to huge lengths to point it out to everyone around them.
“What you are supposed to do when you don’t like a thing is change it. If you can’t change it, change the way you think about it. Don’t complain.” – Maya Angelou
Shun the non-believers and delight the believers by continuing to do your best art, you owe it to them because of their loyalty, belief and support to you.