Rebuilding customer trust after an incident

There’s lots of good material about how to use incidents as learning and improvement opportunities, but there’s less literature about how to rebuild customer trust after an incident.

This subject deserves more formalized study, but in my experience so far I’ve found that customers demand answers to three key questions:

  1. What happened?
  2. How did the company’s normal safeguards fail to prevent the problem before it escalated into an incident?
  3. What has the company done (or is doing) to ensure that this problem and similar problems never happen again?

I dug into each of those in my personal blog, where I also related them to more formal models of trust and studies of apologies.

Trustworthy knots.
Image: CC-BY-SA Rupertsciamenna.