We all experience customer service every day of our life in some form. It could be the receptionist at a doctor’s office, the clerk at the coffee shop, the cashier at the grocery store, or the service manager at a garage.
Last week during our water crisis I watched the people in our water office handle the phone calls. They were polite, pleasant, and showed a deep concern for our water users. After about 3 days of these calls, I was back in the office, and once again I noticed the same concern.
I am always looking for great customer service, but once in awhile I see people acting badly when they deal with the public. I remember when I was at Walmart, and one of our associates treated someone badly, I would always get an answer like this, “I was having a bad day.” My answer was always the same. “When you walk through those doors you have to leave everything at the door.” Of course, I knew they didn’t like that response, so I always had a follow up. “Would you want to be treated the way you treated that customer?” The answer was always NO.
Then we had those associates that would just go above and beyond for their customers. I am happy to say that we always had great customer service scores, and we had happy customers!
In our daily meetings I would also talk about customer service and I would ask. “Do you want to create a happy customer or a raving fan customer?” A raving fan customer is one that you went overboard to help. We would encourage our associates to create raving fan customers, and then we would ask them to talk about the experience they had with that customer in our meetings. So what happened was we had a little competition on making everyone happy. Pretty unique right?
I remember reading a great story about Herman Cain, who was a presidential candidate, but at one time he was a regional vice president of Burger King. He told the story of how when he first started with the company he would go into a Burger King and watch the counter. He noticed that most of the clerks had a smile on their faces, but there were always those that didn’t. Not surprised the smiling people were very courteous, and the non smiling people were rude. He also noticed that in the kitchen there was the same thing, some were smiling and some were not, so he switched them out so all the smiling faces were at the front end, and he instructed all his stores to do the same. Immediately their sales went up.
Many years ago we had a video store on Main Street where Moments to Remember is now called Poppy’s. I’m sure that some of you will remember it, and one thing that you should remember was everyone in there had a smile on their face and they were always happy. One day I asked the owner, “How did you manage to hire so many happy people?” His answer was very simple, “If they didn’t smile in the interview, they didn’t get hired.”
Finally, and this is the best advice I can give you, if you deal with the public, look them in the eye, smile, and say good morning or good afternoon, and I know that you will make that person happy, and they will remember you!
I hope you all have a great week, and it does look like it’s going to get warmer, so that should make everyone smile. See you next Friday!