Well it's 2010 and the recession is still on-going. While we have all been cutting back there has been one indulgence that I have allowed myself. Over the last year or so, if I was not climbing I would have a lazy sunday, walking around the city and going to a smoothie bar called Vive. More recently due to the changes in the city centre they have moved from one place to another. so I was really happy to see that they have now got a new unit right in the cross roads of the new shopping centre. So for the last two or three weeks I have had a number of smoothies from their new place.
So where is this blog going? well today I arrived at 3:35pm wanting one of the 'Gin Slings' (a mixture of ginger orange and apple), there I was eager for my hit of fruit when I was told that they had packed their juicer away for the day and the customer before me had had the last juice drink of the day?????? Ok so now I am confused. I can understand if they had run out of the ingredients. But a full half an hour before they close and they are already packing away. I thanked them for the information and walked off. Then as I started to walk off I began to think about how bad the situation was.
Firstly in today's economy, customer service is key. Companies have to go beyond selling products and give them something they can't get from their competitors.
If they are going to close early then they should have signs saying so.
If for them it is all about money then lets say on average they work 300 days a year, and this happens every day they are open. I ordered one of the cheaper ones so lets use that as an example, I think it comes in at £3.50, so times that by 300 that's £1.050 per year less in the bank.
I am thinking about the times at Hoffi we have worked over time and gone the extra mile. Well beyond the 'opening hours' of the studio. While there has to be a cut off point.
So finally to sum up. If you are setting up a brand or business it has to be genuine and authentic. The owners have to believe in it and they have to talk about why they are doing it, rather than what and how. In the same way brands that have been established for years have also got to look at why they exist.
Ok so they are linked massively, but I wonder with the new breed of technology based games whether there is new possible directions to move in. The below video was produced way back in 2004, making a virtual game and placing it in a physical place, in this case PAC MAN in New York. I wonder if this kind of breaking down barriers and involvement could bring further developments for breaking social and cultural barriers where the sole goal is to reduce mis-understanding and the most empathetic is the real winner?