Magazine article American Banker

Look to Pizza Business for Tips on How to Deliver

Magazine article American Banker

Look to Pizza Business for Tips on How to Deliver

Article excerpt


Frank Meeks, one of the more successful Domino's Pizza franchisees, spoke at one of our sales conferences. I was struck by the simplicity and effectiveness of his philosophy.

Here are six major points that apply to any retail business, including banking:

Never say "no" to the customer.

This is not about always giving the benefit of the doubt and waiving insufficient-funds fees, or transferring wealth from shareholders to customers.

Rather, it means empowering employees to say "yes" to customers. At Mr. Meeks' stores, employees must consult a manager only when they want to say "no" to a customer.

The calculation is that a good customer visits Domino's twice a week and spends $10 each time. That adds up to about $1,000 a year. If that customer were dissatisfied and told two other people about it, that could cost the franchise another $2,000.

With customer loyalty averaging 10 years, you are talking about a $30,000 opportunity.

That means marketing to one customer at a time, treating them as you would want to be treated. Mr. Meeks' employees can do anything that is fair, ethical, and legal without having to ask anyone. And he rewards them for it.

Treat your team the way you want to be treated.

Employers have to exceed their employees' expectations. Mr. Meeks is very picky about whom he hires.

"Be choosy and get great people," he says-which seems to contrast with branch bankers' desperation to find and hire tellers.

The people with customer contact are those who work closest to the ultimate source of business success. Treat them special and they will treat you and each other, accordingly.

Watch sales, profitability, and customer-service rankings.

These are the three most important indicators. Spend marketing dollars on people and recognize achievement immediately. …

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