This Door Might Cause Complaints

interior doorThe door would be normal except that the door handle is pulled up and the door is pulled to exit.

That’s two strikes for most people They can handle the door being pulled in, but complicating things by pulling the door handle up is a bit much. The image is poor because I was inside an imaging center with someone and had to hurriedly grab a cell phone photo while the radiology tech intoned, “Pull Up” in a tone usually heard when parents tell a pre-teen, well, anything for the fifth time that day.

The room behind us had machines that cost more than my car, maybe more than my first home.  There were other rooms with MRI machines and other acronyms that most people hear during bad times or on television.

The place was a tribute to modern medicine, scientific advancement and the best that money can buy.

Except for the door.

And let you think I’m going to rail about the door handle being installed in a way that isn’t typical, I am here to reassure you that I understand these things happen.  They’re dumb things to have happen when everything else is great, but we all understand they happen.

 

My issue is with the two pieces of tape that read:

To Exit,

Pull Handle Up ^

Worsening matters is the up arrow drawn in black marker and unnecessarily labeled “Up” on a door that some purchasing agent negotiated hard to buy for a good price.  All of this activity–the drawing, the two arrows and the word “up” takes place at the waist-high height where most people reach a door handle.  This is in a room filled with people who don’t regularly visit so the simple act of opening the door to leave frustrates the staff.  Their annoyed tones are the last thing people here, and the thing they remember.

The answer for this organization is to simply buy the proper door handle and a simple “Pull” sign available at any office supply or hardware store. If the staff really had to take matters into their hands, something posted at eye-level would help.

But even that only solves the problem of the door in the imaging room.  The bigger, possibly organization-wide issue is that no one is experiencing the organization as a customer does. This minor issue could be a symptom of something bigger.  At best, the cheapo solution doesn’t work. At worst, people may leave with a sense that of something amiss, all because of frustration around a door handle and the way the organization dealt with it.

Your takewaway as an organization’s leader is to walk through your organization this week like a client or prospect does.  What takes special knowledge to understand, and what is idiosyncratic to your firm?  Could you benefit from a mystery shopper program?

What kind of messages is your firm sending for lack of a minor change?

You don’t have to pay a lot for a program if your firm is still small. Offer to switch places with a trusted partner and compare notes.  You’ll bond with your partner, and you’ll both save money.

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