Love this quote from our interview with Social Media / Customer Service proponent, Dave Carroll (of United Break’s Guitars fame):
“…customer service should be all the way through a company, and not just handled by the customer service department.” Dave Carroll
Lowest price really the correct answer? This video may just have the answer:
I had been looking for a specific gift for a family member over the weekend, and had some great customer experiences and poor ones during my travels.
Near the end of my travels, I arrived at the Canadian Tire in St. Albert, Alberta. The first guy I ran into wasn’t terribly rude, but was a little less than helpful.
I asked him if he knew where I might find the certain item in the store – he replied that he didn’t know where the section for those items were even though this store certainly carries those items, and so after an ackward pause, I asked, “do you know perhaps who in the store may know?” – his reply, “not really”.
I said, more in a ‘surprised with his dis-interest’ voice, “I guess I’ll just walk around until I find another employee with a company shirt on and ask them?”
He noted, “probably the best approach to take, because I don’t know where those items are”
WOW, is all I have to say.
And so, I was considering leaving the store all together, disheartenend once again by a poor customer experience, but for some reason decided to try and find the department. The person in Customer Service directed me to the department with a smile on their face, and my day was finally looking up!
I arrived at the department and was greeted by Brook’s smiling face. The item I was looking for wasn’t there, and so I inquired with her.
To make a long story short, to help me in my hunt, she looked up the inventory at all the other stores in the city, called the store manager, looked through the inventory in her department, and when she finally discovered they were out of said item, suggested places nearby that may have some, and even gave me directions to the other stores.
I thanked her and immediately made my way to customer service to fill out a comment card in her favor. Did I mention the fact that they didn’t have the item, and I actually filled out a comment card, or that Brook (and sorry if my age guessing skills are far off) was in her teens in my estimation (I’d say 19 at most but maybe 18 or 17)?
I mean many people complain that teens don’t get it when my experience far too often say’s otherwise. Yes, there are some bad apples and the reliance on social media, texting, and technology may be hindering a generations ability to serve with interest, but there are still many good apples out there as well.
So, in a nutshell, thanks so much Brook for Serving With Excellence yesterday, you are making a difference!
Until next time, yours in Success,
I read this article on my last flight, and just had to post.
I mean if Mr. Geography (see the link below and allow a few seconds for it to open / load) can create an experience for his customers in an Ontario taxi /cab daily, just think of the many ways you can create a memorable experience for your customers…
When was the last time you gave a standing ovation for a performance? What things did the performer do to get that standing ovation?
How could you apply this to your business so that you could get standing ovations (literal / figurative) from your customers?
Homework? Make a list of the 3 things that performer did to get the standing ovations from their customers (the audience) and then strategize around how you could incorporate these into your customer experiences?
Until then, yours in Success, Corey Poirier
Note: This is a repost of our very first Gimmie My Ketchup Blog…just a blast from the past…
…I do a lot of traveling as a result of my Speaking Career and the Newspaper we publish on a monthly basis.
I go through a BIG coffee shop enterprise on a regular basis and 9 times out of 10 the employee at the drive-through keeps my change without asking if I want it back.
Ironically, I don’t want the change back but I also don’t want anyone assuming that they can keep it.
I sometimes wonder when this will be addressed – I’ve spoken up and asked individual managers who said “wow, that should not happen” but on each successive trip through the exact same establishment it continues to….and I haven’t had time to bring it to the attention of the executive team (i.e. CEO) within the organization….sometime soon I’m sure.
hmmm…Should I still care? Should I bring my business somewhere else? So many options to consider….don’t even get me started about the fact that I have to ask for ketchup at some restaurants, if I want some (sad….so sad)
In the meantime – Onward and Upward…
Recently, I was speaking to a group about Getting Standing Ovations from Every Customer and an attendee asked me, “…and don’t you hate how every second server today has a friggin’ tattoo?”
Now, this may be a controversial answer to some (and this blog may be as well) – but I replied, you know what I hate more than tattoos? Someone who is dis-interested in whether or not I, as their customer, walk away from their business with a smile on my face.
To go one step further, what’s on a person’s body is less important to me than how that person makes me feel (insert pun here) and someone having a tattoo, or many tattoos, in my opinion, has very little to do with my experience at their business.
Why I bring this up is I was in a drive-thru today and I noticed the server had a large gawdy looking white band-aid on, and I recalled that she had it on during my previous visit over a month ago – I thought to myself, wow, that is taking a long time to heal and then I realized her employer had her covering up a tattoo. I asked her to show me the tattoo and to be honest, in my opinion, the band-aid looked much worse than the TAT itself.
I next thought to myself, interesting how they’ll let staff members walk around with a frown on their face, dis-interest in their voice, and a poor attitude, but make the best server they have cover up a tattoo.
I’m not judging them or saying it’s wrong to have them cover it up, as that depends on the nature of their business, but perhaps at least a skin coloured band-aid at least.
My next stop was at a service station where the friendliest employee had a tattoo on her inside finger. I just noticed it barely and most wouldn’t have, but I asked her to show it to me as well. Anyway, coolest tattoo, super friendly employee – I’ll be back.
As you can tell, in my opinion, an employee having a tattoo has little to do with my experience as a customer, and in fact, often, the person with the tattoo has me leaving with a smile on my face more than ones without.
And besides, I think if you’re bothered by someone having a tattoo also having a job or career, you’re going to have to start staying at home more often – because it’s becoming much more accepted.
I stopped by a pharmacy the other day and the head pharmacist had a large tattoo right there on her wrist running into her forearm. My doctor has a tattoo on his ring finger.
As the picture for this post indicates, I now have tattoos on the tops of my feet (all in the name of getting the story).
And one of my fav. tattooed women (Kat Von D) has become a very successful (and respected) entrepreneur, and even gives talks to troubled youth and so on.
IMO, The bottom line isn’t whether or not an employee has a tattoo or not, it’s whether that tattoo impacts their level of service (not your perception of whether it does) and I have yet to see a case where the tattoo itself has negatively done that.
Besides, I think it’s difficult to argue that Tattooed business people have received standing ovations from their customers for many years.
Think Ozzy Osbourne, Tommy Lee and Nikki Sixx of Motley Crue, Spoken word artist and Punk Legend Henry Rollins, Pink, Lenny Kravitz…most of these performers (whether you’re a fan or not, or whether their off-stage antics are questionable or not) have been receiving Standing Ovations from “Their Customers” for years – tattoos or not.
So perhaps a good summary would be – maybe it’s time to start worrying more about the employees with the frowning faces and poor attitudes than the ones with tattoos.
And if you’re worried that having employees with tattoos with impact your business in a negative way, show your customers you care and ask their opinion?
I’m not saying to then let go of a good employee with a tattoo if your customer is bothered by it and if there is a solution (I don’t want to get the human rights orgs. after me), I’m just saying at least then you’ll know whether a solution is needed (like covering the tattoos with a gawdy band-aid!), and you can act accordingly.
But just make sure you also consider doing something about the dis-engaged employees who don’t want to be there in the first place at the same time (or before)!
Just one man’s opinion mind you,
Until Later, have a Rock N’ Roll Day…
If you want to become the supplier that customers flock to, you have to fully understand what those customers are looking for, and serve accordingly.
The following is an excerpt from my 2010 interview with Cora Tsouflidou, founder of Cora’s Breakfast Restaurants.
And when asked why customers are choosing Cora’s more and more often, she adds, “People are looking for a quality, unique and tasty food experience; and Cora’s serves that up daily. We are really just answering the demand for Healthy Food in a desirable package.”
Perhaps that explains why the Cora’s Franchise group (at the time of our interview) is comprised of 115 stores across Canada, and providing paychecks for 4,000 people.
That’s what happens when you place your focus on your customer’s needs rather than your own.
Until next time, here’s to your greater success,