I have seen 16 years of my life. In all these years I have used a multitude of products – good ones and those made by the leading companies of the world. While there are quite a few from which I got real pleasure and value for money, there is one which is not only a cynosure of my eyes but also the one which has been made by the best company of the world. It is the iPod touch made by Apple. I have my experience to share with you to justify my conclusion and which will also drive my point home.
My Dad had gifted me an iPod touch 2 years back. It was a really a “thing of beauty” which really turned into “a joy forever”. I kept the iPod with me all through – downloading applications, hearing music, maintaining contact numbers, searching Google maps, watching movies, playing games, seeing photos and many other things. I walked, ate and slept with my iPod. The rough use naturally took its toll. The start button went inside the cage, though the iPod worked wonderfully well as always.
I happened to be at Geneva, Switzerland and went to the Apple Store at Rue De Riva. After having downed coffee at the adjoining Starbucks shop, I went to spend quality time at the Apple Store. I am already a proud owner of iPad and therefore I just wanted to be in the Store to chat with the Apple guys and to meet other members of the Apple clan.
While at the Apple Store I just thought of looking into the possibility of having my iPod checked. The time was 4.30 p.m and the Apple guy at the counter logged in my request and set up my appointment with his colleague at the Genius Bar at 5.10 p.m. Honestly, I was not too keen to keep my appointment as I thought that the guys would not be able resolve my problem. At best they would take an hour or so to open the iPod to set it right and in the worst situation they would ask me to leave my iPod behind for a rectification job. And that too would be at a cost.
Very reluctantly I ambled my way to the Genius Bar at the scheduled time. The Apple guy at the counter was wearing a “Genius” collar around his neck. I explained the problem to him and he took my iPod and rapidly switched it on and off several times. “Whoa! I have got my iPod to have it rectified and not to be broken” I muttered to myself.
Well, this guy turned out to be a real genius. He looked at me calmly and told me that the iPod did have a problem. In a low voice he told me that unfortunately the iPod model which I was having is out of stock otherwise he would have possibly replaced it.
Replace it? What? Did I hear him right? How could it be? – all these questions sprang in mind all at once. “Hey, this couldn’t be for real. Is he really going to replace my old used iPod touch for a new one ?” I just kept on thinking.
Not to let my surprise be evident, I told him that I gotta go far and if he could run a check. You know what – this “GENIUS” went inside the store and came back with a brown box. He opened it up and I saw a shining new iPod in his hand. “You are lucky” he told me with a wry smile. My eyes opened wide and my jaws dropped in surprise as the GENIUS coolly went ahead to write down a receipt. He asked me to sign it which I did so most gleefully.
I took the new iPod in my hands and just couldn’t stop telling the Apple Genius that “Apple is the Best Company in the whole world”. This is what is called “achieving customer delight by exceeding expectations”.
Rest of the great companies of the world – Sit Up and Take Stock. Take this test and ask yourselves some simple questions.
How many times have you done this?
In real time?
At the spot?
Without any delay?
With no questions asked?
And without charging a cent?
Long Live Apple and Long Live Steve Jobs.