Is bigger better? Does size matter?

I recently called into one of the premium satellite television services companies to cancel my account. I figured one of the largest contact centers in the country should be able to handle that with some amount of efficiency. It took over 45 minutes. I was on hold for 35+ minutes. Good luck to the agents who try to save those accounts.

So, no, bigger is not always better.

I love motorcycles and have a favorite service shop near my house. When I call, they usually answer. I always get great service, unbeatable prices, and a relationship with the owner that has turned into a friendship. Whenever possible, I use this shop instead of the large dealerships because of ease of operation, pricing, and the personal touch. But the shop guys aren’t always there, and I’m occasionally forced to go to the moto-maul to pick up an overpriced part from a kid who could care less. That’s the trade-off. That is how the shop operates. They don’t mind missing the business when they are gone.

Starting to sound a bit like Goldilocks? This one is too hot, this one too cold. This is too soft, this one too hard. This one too big, this one too small. That’s the way it works when looking for a partner in business. You must find the one that is just right.

Often, being larger means more challenges and more problems, especially with service businesses. The Law of Diminishing Returns teaches us there is a point at which the level of profits or benefits gained is less than the amount of money or energy invested. Teams that grow too large can reach a level where the effort required outweighs the work accomplished.

We’ve all experienced the vendor that is “too big”. They grow through various means and sometimes too quickly. Morale often suffers. Financial requirements and payment options are often more stringent. These service companies usually have adequate expertise and manpower resources. But they can lack the empathy, understanding, and common sense that a superior services relationship demands. The result is longer resolution times and a decrease in customer satisfaction. If you call into the contact centers of the largest services providers, you will typically wait much longer for service than many smaller organizations.

We have all experienced services companies who fall into the “too small” category, as well. They can have good people and good expertise but usually lack in available resources. You can’t rely on them for 24/7 support. You may find more flexible financial requirements which make selecting a small services company more beneficial. You may find it easier to navigate red tape. But, there is always a trade-off.

Then there is the “ideal partner”. Not too small and not too big. Experienced mid-sized companies have the unique position of remaining nimble and creative. Employees are typically more motivated by being with a company that recognizes their efforts. And, the human element they offer provides common sense and empathy that outweighs red tape and bureaucracy. They have all the expertise and resources required for reliability. They have a proven track record of success. Simply put, they make it easy to do business. Like the team at AVDS.

Is this true for all businesses? Of course not. However, it is a common challenge and should be a reminder to carefully choose your business partners. When companies do business together, there is a commitment to success by both parties. The relationship should be a good fit. Select your partner carefully. Don’t settle for too hot, too cold, too hard, too soft, too big, or too small. Find the partner who is just right. Call AVDS.

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