A general election was called today for the 6th May 2010.  Labour will go to the people and hope that they can eat away at the now slender lead the Conservatives have in the polls.

This is the biggest customer service pitch around.  We the people are the Government’s customers and we will be deciding who gets to provide our customer service over the next 4 – 5 years.

Think of this in terms of commerce and it throws up a very interesting slant on things.  Imagine if every company you dealt with only gave you the option to move once every 4 – 5 years and you only had two main companies to choose from.  It would be a major decision and one which you would probably agonise over a lot.  You would take advice from people about their experiences, you would look at all the angles and then you would make the decision.

This is quite similar to the purchase of a new car or house.  You research, you evaluate, you test drive a car or visit a house any number of times and then and only then do you make your decision.

How many people put this much thought into who they are voting for?  In fact some people do not even bother to vote at all.  This is a akin to saying just stick me in any car or house for the next five years and I will put up with it, ludicrous when you think about it.

The next Government of this country will have a massive customer service challenge on their hands.  A great deal of mistrust and a cynical view now prevails amongst us the punters who will call upon the customer service of the Government in numerous ways over the next five years be it through the NHS, our local council etc etc.

So the next leader of Britain will have to try and do something to change the mindset of their punters / customers over the next five years and all of this against a backdrop of inevitable cuts in spending (I don’t care what the parties say – cuts will come).

If we get a hung parliament where does that leave us the customer?  This will probably be very similar to times when companies have merged together and infighting and backbiting often mean that the customer’s needs fall through the cracks.

The next month or so is a sales and marketing exercise – the following five years is about serving your customers – which party will live up to the challenge I wonder?