Hear, Hear!

We all consider ourselves good listeners. But maybe we are not as good as we think. When we surveyed JCK retail panel members about the importance of listening, we got an earful about how bad listening caused bad customer experiences. There was the store where an employee asked an overweight woman when she was giving birth. “If she was listening, it wouldn’t have happened,” the owner says. Or the store where the customer asked for H–I color diamonds but was shown F–G. They lost the sale. Or the store where a customer wanted an entire ring rhodium plated. The owner thought he only wanted the grooves plated. And yet these problems are common. “I can’t tell you how many times a customer describes something we have and they are shown something else,” one retailer moans. It’s no wonder some now see listening as not just a routine activity—but a skill in itself. “I le

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