Why It Is Better to Meet Customer Expectations Than to Surpass Them
If you could do the job even better than you promised the client, wouldn’t that make sense? While it can be tempting to do even better than you agreed, to impress someone, it can have a downside.
As the business site Entrepreneur explains, one of the fundamental problems with giving a client or customer more than they expected is that it adjusts expectations. Here the author gives an example of getting a couple of extra munchkins at Dunkin Donuts. He received a bonus quite often in his regular store, so he was disappointed when he went elsewhere and got exactly what he promised:
At the micro level, Dunkin Donuts has fulfilled its value proposition. The franchise operator acted in their own best interest while giving me what I paid for. At the macro level, however, Dunkin Donuts disappointed me. I was so used to my expectations exceeding my expectations that when the franchise “just” met my expectations,
Of course, we can rationally know that we cannot get upset when a company does exactly what it promised, but we also know that our own customers or customers are not always rational. You can avoid this frustration by constantly delivering exactly what was promised instead of constantly overfulfilling it.
There is also the problem of free work. Especially if you are freelance, going beyond essentially means working for free. This can sometimes be useful for attracting a customer that you might otherwise lose, but if you usually do more than necessary just to be good, you lose billable hours. The best solution may be a second offer for a larger or better job at a reduced price if you want to seduce a client. Just be careful not to give your skills and time away for free.