How 4 Hours and a kid at the Apple store changed everything…

I recently had an issue with my Mac book Air, for some reason when it started up, it would go all weird and then shut down again. Now I don’t know about you, but in my line of work my single most important tool is my laptop.

So I booked a session at the genius bar in my local Apple store for the next day to try and get the problem resolved. When I arrived I was greeted by one of the staff, they looked up my appointment and then ushered me over to the genius bar, where I waited for about 2 minutes before the technical service person arrived. He shook my hand and introduced himself asked a few questions I explained what was happening with my laptop as he got straight into testing and checking what was going on with it.

The initial problem found was the battery and I explained that I had recently only been getting around 3 hours life from it. He said that unfortunately batteries do need to be replaced and were not covered under warranty, he went on to find that the hard drive had a problem and it needed to be left with them for repair and the turnaround time would be 3-5 days, as the next day was a public holiday. I explained that I would really appreciate it if they could attend to it ASAP and told him that I was a speaker and that I use the laptop for my presentations and why it was so important to have it back sooner rather than later. He asked a few questions about what I delivered presentations on and said leave it with me I will see if I can get it back to you day after tomorrow, being the public holiday.

So I leave the store at 1pm in the afternoon, get home, take out my old laptop and start doing some work. At 4.30pm the phone rings and it’s the young guy from the Apple store. He said your Mac book Air is ready for you to pick up. Well I was a little shocked and said, “Really?” He said, “Yes sir, after you left I went and spoke to my manager and explained that you are changing lives through your presentations, and we at Apple need to support you in doing that.” So I thanked him and got straight down to the store.

When I arrived I was greeted once again by one of the staff, told them why I was there, and asked for the young man that called me. They said he had finished for the day and someone else would look after me and proceeded to usher me to the genius bar where I waited for someone to bring out my laptop. I was then greeted by the manager, who introduced herself and handed me my laptop and explained that they had replaced the battery, the hard drive and a couple of other technical bits. She then apologised for the inconvenience and said that it was all taken care of and to keep up the good work. I had to sign for it of course, I thanked her and asked if she would thank the young man that looked after me. When she replied, “That’s just what we do here at Apple and thank you I most certainly will.” So by the time I got home I had an email from Apple with the repairs and when I looked at the paperwork, the amount for the repairs was $1063.00 with the balance Nil, and a note Authorised by the manager.

Now sure, some of it would have been covered under warranty, however the way I was treated and the whole experience throughout was something else.

So again as I have said before, my question is, if Apple can do it, why can’t every business achieve that same level of Customer Experience? It has nothing to do with how big you are or how much money you have, it all comes down to leadership and how well you can lead a team to deliver the customer experience that is expected by your customers.