Monday, May 7, 2012

Goober's Customer Service Secrets

"I like to listen. I have learned a great deal from listening carefully. Most people never listen" --- Ernest Hemmingway

George Lindsey, the actor who played the character Goober Pyle on the Andy Griffith Show, died yesterday at the age of 83. His character took over the position of Mayberry's gas station attendant after Gomer Pyle joined the Marines. Lindsey went on to play the same character on the hit show Hee Haw, and in stand-up comedy shows for many years. While loved for his innocence and simplicity, leaders can learn a great deal from how Goober ran his station.

Three Goober traits we can adopt today:

1.) First, Goober never formed an opinion about a person until he really had a chance to know him or her. He always listened, I mean really listened, to what the customer had to say before responding. Of course Goober would listen with his mouth open in child-like anticipation, but he still listened. When we do the same (minus the open mouth), we not only hear what the customers want, need, are complaining about, etc., but we see how they say it. We can witness in their body language more of what they are trying to communicate. Goober could sense what the customer was needing and addressed those needs.

2.) Next, Goober was passionate about fixing the problem. He worked relentlessly trying to get the car running, fix the flat, provide alternative transportation, and anything and everything else that would help to make the customer happy. Goober knew his job and not only wanted to provide satisfaction to his customers, but he would make sure that if he found another problem not addressed by the customer, he would fix that too. He always knew that if the customer was happy, then he and the town of Mayberry were happy.

3.) Finally, Goober knew that he knew when a project was right. His standards were often above the customer's and he stubbornly stood his ground when it came to making a repair or pumping gas. Goober's confidence in his abilities spilled over to the service he provided for his customers. He doggedly worked until the vehicle purred like a kitten even if the customer didn't bring the vehicle in for that kind of treatment. Goober's pride in his workmanship didn't allow for him to cut corners or skip over quality for the sake of quantity. This led him to develop a reputation for being perfectionist and in more than one episode caused Andy Griffith to recommend Goober to a customer as the greatest mechanic around.

1 comment:

Christopher Battles said...

Thank you Johnny for this blog. I really enjoyed the insight and example of good ole "Goob." I grew up watching this show as my parents were fans of it growing up. His quarks made him such a lovable character in the show. As with all people, focus on the good and see those areas shine.
Thank you again Johnny.

P.S. I saw this blog on Dan Miller's site, but I figured I would the same comment here.

K, bye

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