Summary of The Satisfied Customer

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Experts see more than meets the eye when they evaluate customer satisfaction. Business professor Claes Fornell and his team at the National Quality Research Center at the University of Michigan developed the American Customer Satisfaction Index, a sophisticated customer-reaction monitoring system that produces indexes across multiple economic sectors, industries, companies and government agencies. In this book, Fornell discusses how his team quantifies the “unobservable” in customer service. His researchers measure things “we can’t see” and then develop their findings into useful customer satisfaction information. Fornell theorizes about the utility of the “summation of ignorance” and discusses neuroscience, quantum mechanics and relativity theory, all with impressive erudition and insight, and all in the service of making sure that you know how crucial it is to keep your customers satisfied. getAbstract recommends his thorough, thoughtful and accessible treatise.

About the Author

Claes Fornell, a professor of business at the Stephen M. Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, is an expert on measuring and managing customer satisfaction.



Never Take Your Customers for Granted

In 1997, after only four years as a U.S. Major League Baseball team, the Florida Marlins won the World Series, officially making the Miami-based squad the nation’s best baseball team. For such a young team, it was a remarkable accomplishment. Local baseball fans loved the Marlins. Sports writers agreed that fans were likely to turn out in large numbers in subsequent seasons to support the new champions. But almost immediately after the end of the ’97 season, Marlins’ owner Wayne Huizenga began trading off top stars to reduce the team’s hefty $47 million annual payroll. In return, Huizenga got additional draft picks and some no-name, but promising, players. The sports media described Huizenga’s frenzied moves to get rid of the Marlins’ best players as a “fire sale.” Undeterred, Huizenga continued quickly shedding high-priced baseball talent.

By the start of the 1998 season, Huizenga had cut his team’s payroll to $15 million, a notable achievement. But as far as the local fans were concerned, Huizenga’s sell-off drove a stake into the heart of the team. The Marlins went from being World Series champions in 1997 to being the worst...

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