This past week I had the opportunity to welcome back one of our most loyal customers .Mr. Young has been staying at our property for almost three years on and off. He traveled internationally for business and came back after several months of conducting business outside the US.
When he came back this week, we talked, catching on his whereabouts. Not knowing where he was for almost three months, I was wondering if he chose another hotel over us. He said he simply had some business to conduct in Asia and returned to the US recently. He concluded the conversation by saying,” Tal, I am still a raving fan of your hotel and staff.” Music to my ears from a long time customer!
As a guest service experience manager and trainer, I keep up with our Raving customers. The daily feedback I engage with, lets me know what’s on their hearts and minds. Are we on the right track and are we creating more raving customers to win in the market place?
Here are some examples of our raving customers:
“Just wanted to say how wonderful our stay was at your Hotel. This was our second visit and everything was consistent with our first stay a year ago. What makes your hotel so great are the employees that work care. From the moment you arrive, everyone is so caring and sincere in their efforts to make sure everything is good.. That is a very positive sign that this is a good place to work. That is why everyone takes pride in representing Congratulations to the management team for a job well done.”
Another raving customer feedback:
“We would like to express our thanks for a wonderful experience. We found your hotel to be one of the best we have stayed in for quite a while. Above all the staff were so friendly. We would especially like to commend one of our servers for the morning buffet. We will definitely stay with you again when we come back to the Dallas area. We were very pleased.”
So what did notice was the key theme in the customer feedback I shared with you?
What stood out for me personally was our staff creating a customer rave experience for them. The staff created a memorable magic throughout their stay and more importantly created loyalty for our guests to come back.
So what can we do as leaders, business owners, and entrepreneurs to create more raving customers for our business?
Strategy #1- Be selective in your hiring process
As a business owner and manager, you really have an opportunity to select excellence from the very get go by hiring the right attitude and service skills to win with customers. If your business is defined by customer service excellence as a core value, then you need the right people on the bus. People who understand and show a history of customer service excellence from previous jobs and experiences. Not just how they functioned on the job, but how they added value to the customer experience in the business.
Strategy #2-Train, Train and do some more training
As a leader, you have to grow and develop your team. It’s that simple! Nothing grows unless you nurture and plant the seeds to develop the talent you have in your organization. Set time for customer service training and hone the skills you expect your team to deliver with the customer day in and day out.
Strategy #3-Lead by example
Often times, managers and business owners take a back seat to leading and serving the customer in their organization. They let the customer service “department” handle the initiatives and training. However, your influence is critical to show your team that you are leading from the front and not from the back when it comes to setting the example and expectations for your service philosophy in your business. So go out and engage, build relationships with your customers and employees.