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Great Expectations

September 25, 2012

(Cartoon from

A bit of a personal one – but I’ve been thinking recently about what people expect from the services that they buy, and why we expect the things that we do….

I got hit by a bus a few weeks ago.  A bit of a dramatic way of putting it, but my little Peugeot didn’t come off very well and while I’m on the mend it has caused me some stress over the past couple of weeks.

I’ve been dealing with insurance companies and their ‘trusted partners’ a lot over the past 14 days.

Dealing with insurance companies is a bit of a weird thing anyway:

It’s a service that you probably assume you’ll never have to use, so you decide on price

In fact, this is the norm to the extent that a whole industry has sprung up around it.  Without this basic truth Gio Compare and that Meerkat wouldn’t exist.

It makes sense at the beginning of the process.  If you’ll never have to use it, why pay more for it?

The problem is when you do have to use it you end up dealing with 6 different companies who are all scrapping for business to make the most money out of your accident.

They have no relationship with you.  In fact, quite a lot of the time I’ve felt like I’m the product rather than the customer.

The thing is, I’m not sure that this is an industry that could ever change.  In a market that is so totally dominated by price, could an insurance company even begin to differentiate on service?

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