How is your relationship like customer service?

We have all experienced good customer service. What did that experience feel like?

In my experience, I was treated respectfully and I felt important. My complaints or returns were gracefully dealt with. The salespeople went out of their way to understand my needs and wants. They went out of their way to ensure that I was helped to the best of their ability. Their service was such that it exceeded my expectations. Does this sound familiar or is it just wishful thinking of how we would like to be treated?

How did I respond when I experienced great service? Those businesses had my loyalty and repeat custom. I wanted to go back for the experience of being treated well. I was more inclined to increase how often and how much I spent in that business. It was a pleasure doing business with them and I went away happy.

What does this have to do with your relationship?

Actually, it has everything to do with it. In a way, each person in a relationship is his or her own 'product'. Each can provide 'good customer service', and in turn each will be the 'customer' of the other. Obviously, this is a metaphor - a relationship is not a business transaction, and partners don't really buy or own one another. But this metaphor can help remind us of some of the ways partners can care for each other and treat each other with respect.

What does this look like in a relationship?

What does being a desirable 'product' mean? It means becoming the kind of person that someone is interested in. It means looking good and pleasing in order to capture the eye of a potential 'customer', and perhaps having a unique feature that sets them apart from the crowd. It means that they promise to solve a problem – be it a companion and lover, having the potential to be good parent material, helping with finances, or making a home a place of safety.

In short, we each have to provide greater value to someone than their other options in order for them to have us in their life. As they say on flights: "We know you have a choice of providers and thank you for choosing us". We have to be easy to work with and interact with. If we make things too complicated, it can become hard work and not enjoyable.

Being multifunctional in personality and practicality will help make life better. What is the point of being together if it only makes life worse? If life becomes worse, then our partner may perceive their only option as leaving and moving on to either remain single or find another partner who will make their life better.

What is the role of the 'customer'? (A role each partner takes in relation to the other.) They have to have mutual respect. Do they speak with kindness and courtesy? Or are they hostile and demanding, wanting expectations met? Do they treat their partner as a servant, there for their pleasure alone? They need to give honest feedback on how they are doing, so that they can develop and grow and make the experience better for both. If they make the relationship fun and actually like each other, it has the potential to change attitudes and energy levels in their partnership.

This simple metaphor is powerful if you want to have a relationship that will last. If you can each develop the mindset of being the best 'product', the best 'customer service person' and the best 'customer', your relationship will be amazing.

The choice is yours: be a 'product' that someone is proud to be with, and every day give great customer service with no thought of what you will get in return. Your partner will in turn be loyal to you and choose to 'do business' with you and no other competitor. The beauty is that what is happening on your side is also happening on theirs. They are being the best 'product' for you and giving you great 'customer service' to help make your life fantastic. We all first must give before we get. But when each gives, both win.

If you're not having a good 'customer' experience in your relationship, call Sue now on 0439 294 532 to talk about how you can improve your life and relationship.

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