The customer is always right, so we’re told. That is an old analogy but it rings true for the engineers at General Motors behind wonders such as the Corvette Stingray, Cadillac CTS, GMC Sierra and Buick Enclave. This is because they are going to learn what customers love and hate about the vehicles they are producing right from the dealership sales floor where the magic happens.
The automaker has so far sent 90 engineers into the front lines to meet with field service engineers, dealership sales managers and aftersales service technicians among many more people to follow. Their hopes are to identify ways to make better cars and to improve the communication they have with their customers.
Mark Reuss, GM’s executive vice president of Global Product Development, is particularly proud of the program, noting the engineers are acting as “agents of change” within their respective departments, and are teaching lessons that create the customer-centric culture at General Motors.
Corvette Chassis Systems Engineer Michael Bailey said that the program does indeed work.
“It gives me new perspective on what I do every day, like things I need to put more focus on that can help our dealers and improve the customer experience,” Bailey said.
After the visits, they go to Walt Disney World, where they educate themselves on how Disney conducts their customer relations and earn high marks for their customer satisfaction. Should come in handy, considering how Disney manages to keep such a high customer satisfaction rate at its theme parks despite the steep admission prices.