The Guru's Guide to Happiness: Being amazing and being amazed

A wise man once said, "what goes around comes around."customer_happiness

I've found that the same sentiment holds true for creating happiness and amazement for your customers. Everything we do to stun and amaze our customers comes back to us tenfold.

So how do we create happy customers?

The answer is simple: We all go out of our way every day to go above and beyond the call of duty to form a real bond with our customers. We try to make every interaction be far more than just "Hey, you're paying us so sure we'll help you out" and more like "You're our partner and our friend, is there anything more can I do to make you happy?


Examples include times I've made house calls to help with training operators and give live demos to show off what we can do specifically to tailor Olark to a company's needs. Or the time I made a tech support phone call at 6am on a Saturday to help someone with a sticky install issue who had a Monday morning launch date they didn't want to miss.

There is nothing that makes me happier than to hear the delight from a customer when I or one of my crack team does something unexpectedly amazing to help them. It's not exactly as awesome as being the firefighter who pulls Timmy up from the bottom of the well, but we feel good at the end of the day.


Examples of how this blows back to us. Customers have:

  1. Brought fresh baked chocolate cookies to our doorstep (My first week on the job)
  2. Brought us 6 bottles of home brewed beer (yes, I shared)
  3. Sent a box fine chocolates and cheeses (+++)
  4. Sent the office a bottle of 12 year old scotch (that disappeared fast!)

This year we sat down and wrote Christmas cards to a few hundred of our customers (among thousands so please don't get mad if you didn't get a card on the first round). It was the most fun day at work ever, sitting around in a group writing and drawing art on the cards, laughing and smiling at how good it felt to reach out to our wonderful customers.

We also invite our local customers or those who are in town or around the area on business (we're in San Francisco) to drop on by for one of our regular Tuesday night barbecues. Rain or shine we hang out after work on Tuesday, cooking, toasting, talking and we love it when our customers grace us with their presence.

Come on by if you get a chance when you're in San Francisco. We love to cook for our friends.

Check out relevant topics on: Customer Support

Bill Thompson

Read more posts by Bill Thompson

Bill is the Guru of Customer Happiness for Olark. He's been building and writing about community and online customer service since Internet 1.0.