Something to Learn from an Unexpected Place

Amar Pandit , CFA , CFP

Amar Pandit

A respected entrepreneur with 25+ years of Experience, Amar Pandit is the Founder of several companies that are making a Happy difference in the lives of people. He is currently the Founder of Happyness Factory, a world-class online investment & goal-based financial planning platform through which he aims to help every Indian family save and invest wisely. He is very passionate about spreading financial literacy and is the author of 4 bestselling books (+ 2 more to release in 2020), 8 Sketch Books, Board Game and 700 + columns.

I am a strong believer of life-long learning. I also believe it is one of the qualities that separate the most outstanding professionals with the average ones in any field or profession. You want to spot a world class professional (if they are not popular yet) or the one in making, ask “What are you Learning?”. I think I am digressing from the subject, but I promise to write on this in a future post. A finer point and the subject of this post is that learning can come from the most unexpected places. In fact, learning is everywhere (but depends on you and your mindset) and my colleague Mahesh experienced this last week. He was so excited about it that I decided to share this with everyone.

Last week, Mahesh was getting late for a meeting and he did not feel like driving. So, he did the next best thing; hop into an Autorickshaw (Auto). As soon as he sat in the 3-wheeler, he was transported into a different world (I am not exaggerating). This made him feel like he was in some special vehicle. He had never experienced something like this.

So, what was so special here? The interior of the Auto was a soothing green colour. The driver had 12+ plants that were very well placed and Mahesh felt like he was sitting in a park. Though he was getting late for the meeting, he felt a sense of calm. He felt refreshed and there was a smile on his face. Most importantly, he felt inspired by the magic this driver had managed to create. There was a certain design element to the interiors. The driver was very thoughtful of how he wanted his passengers to feel. Though he might not have known the word “Client Experience”, in essence the driver had exactly created a world class experience for his passenger.

Mahesh’s short ride came to an end, but he did not feel like getting off. He did get off and paid the driver Rs.100 even when the fare was just Rs.46. The driver however did not want to accept the additional Rs.54 but Mahesh told him “This additional Rs.54 is for the experience; please continue to maintain the rickshaw the way you do it. It’s simply outstanding.” I asked Mahesh for the name of this gentleman, but he had missed asking him.

So, what has this got to do with you?

I am sure many readers of this blog including you would have figured out the connection.

What do we expect when we sit in an Auto? A ride from one place to another. It is a simple transaction. Most of us do not even notice the driver or the ride in particular as this has become a commoditized experience. However, this driver managed to transform a commoditized experience into a magical passenger experience. The passenger felt special, and this translated into loads of encouragement and praise for the driver as well as a higher (2X +) fare for the same distance ride.

What can we learn from this driver and this experience?

The Passenger Experience is the most important thing in this business. He knows how fast he drove or how he beat other rickshaws (in speed) is absolutely irrelevant and in fact foolish (not to mention risky).

He knew intuitively that he had to make passengers feel special.

Think about it.

What do prospects experience when they meet you?

How do you make them feel?

I have observed that in our industry/profession, it is all about how fast my auto is and whether I am beating some stupid invisible rickshaw index (naming it Rickshex after Sensex). We are made to believe that telling investors “how fast we drive or how fast we beat others or how fast we reach the destination” is how we create value for them. This is a completely insane way of delivering client experience, but this is exactly what happens in the first meeting.

Instead of telling investors how great you are or how great your auto is, get them to experience the ride with you.

Your prospect gets into a meeting with you having a certain expectation of how it will go.

Do you surprise the prospect? Do you give him/her/them an experience that he/she/they are not expecting?

Do you delight the prospect?

Reflect over these questions.

This is the first and most important experience that your prospects will ever have with you. The day you understand its importance is the day you will start thinking about your passenger experience. After all, your role is to take your clients from point a to point d, x and z in their journey of life.



P.S. There is a dedicated chapter on Client Experience in my book “The HappyRich Advisor” that you are bound to enjoy. I have been getting awesome feedback and testimonials from readers like you. I can assure you that you will love it and find a ton of value in it. To order your copy, click here.