Fussy commandments Featured

10:06am EDT July 22, 2002

Fussy Cleaners, a 20-location chain of dry cleaners based in Akron, has a well-deserved reputation for laboring mightily to stand out in a crowded business segment. President John Baraona, for instance, once decided to launch a costly image-advertising campaign on local public television.

But he knows that when customers can just be rude, his company’s success also depends on ensuring that his employees display positive attitudes. Thus, for years he’s had a set of customer-service principles, which he calls “Our 10 Commandments of Good Business.” They follow:

  • A customer is the most important person in any business.

  • A customer is not dependent on us; we are dependent on him.

  • A customer is not an interruption of our work; he is the purpose of it.

  • A customer does us a favor when he buys; we are not doing him a favor by serving him.

  • A customer is a part of our business, not an outsider.

  • A customer is not someone to argue or match wits with.

  • A customer is a person who brings us his needs. It is our job to fill these needs.

  • A customer is deserving of the most courteous and attentive treatment we can give him.

  • A customer is the fellow that makes it possible to pay your salary. Treat him well.

  • A customer is the lifeblood of this and every other business.