Who Believes The Customer Is Always Right?

3 minute read

We live in a world of hyper-sensitive people. And yes, many people (especially customers) often believe they are entitled to things that we never even considered. Because of this attitude by the consumer, it has become challenging, to say the least, trying to make everyone happy and willing to give you a good review!


If for no other reason than what I stated above, we, as business owners, cannot sit idly by and embrace that philosophy anymore. The fact is: we live in a world today that generally approves of what I like to call “situational ethics.” This simply means that people tend to adjust their “ethics” (honesty and integrity). The dictionary defines ethics as “moral principles that govern a person’s behavior.”

While none of us is perfect, and most of us strive to be ethical, we now live in a world where a large percentage of people tend to skew the truth to make it fit with their narrative.


Often, your gut tells you if the customer or client is being fair, honest, and reasonable. You can call it intuition, the ability to judge well, or just a “feeling!” Regardless, those that operate their lives with integrity can quite often identify a prospect or client that gives you that feeling of wanting to run – away from them.

Twenty-five years ago, I had a boss that often said, “sometimes the best job for the competition is the one you walk away from!” As owners, you should not run your business always trying to take every job. Use discretion. Evaluate the potential opportunity – and the potential pitfalls.


There is nothing worse than completing a job, feeling good about how it went, and then finding out they aren’t happy, or refuse to pay, or sue you for some bogus damages. All this can often be avoided if you would evaluate every potential job that comes to you. Make rational, logical, calm decisions about whether the job is “right” for your company. Many times, there are little clues that give you a heads up that you should politely decline the job.

My favorite saying when I have to turn down a potential job or client is to simply say “I’m sorry, it doesn’t sound like we are the right fit for your needs.”  That enables you to walk away, save face, and extract yourself out of a potentially bad client situation. If you want to be a little bolder, offer the name of your most frustrating competitor to the client. Encourage them to call the other guy. (We used to do this all the time when I was a GM of a restoration company). And we helped the competitor go out of business because they took every job – and got in trouble with many of them.

By Dick Wagner, Co-Founder The CREST Network, LLC                         

Nationally recognized coach, consultant, trainer, and speaker

Creator of the renowned PREP™ pre-disaster program

Owner of AskDickWagner.com BLOG

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