My good friend and I regularly have lunch at a nearby deli. We enjoy the food (and ice cream), and as you can imagine, during our long discussions, we always have an answer to solve all of the world's problems!
There is one thing that sets this restaurant apart from other lunch options.
Well, really, there is one person that sets this place apart!
I’m talking about Carey, and she usually takes our lunch order. She greets us by calling us “Mr. B and Mr. B”. And she consistently provides the best customer experience you would find anywhere!
When we have to, we will wait in line longer just to go to her register to order our lunch. We always have fun and laugh with her.
I’ve also noticed that she is always busy, productive, and willing to do any job in the restaurant because customers are number one to her.
Recently, the deli (which is part of a large restaurant chain) made a change in their menu and dropped a healthy salad we really liked and usually ordered.
Carey knew that salad was a favorite of ours, so in advance to our arrival, she acted on her own by going cross-functionally to her internal customers, the kitchen personnel, to see if they would still prepare that favorite salad.
Boy, when we were still able to order that salad, she gave us an experience that exceeded our expectations.
The other day I was talking with someone else who regularly eats at this deli, and the discussion came around to Carey.
This person told me that at Christmas, their lunch bunch gave Carey $500 as a “thank you” gift. WOW!
How about you? What kind of customer experience do you usually receive wherever you go? It’s not often we receive the kind of customer delight that comes from someone like Carey.
It is sad that we tend to expect poor customer service. And, we are surprised when we truly receive good customer service.
As a Christian, I believe our customer service ties directly to our faith.
Genesis 1:27 says, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and email he created them.” (ESV)
Since God created everyone, then it makes sense for us to provide top-notch customer service to all.
Every leader can grow a thriving business by understanding the most common reasons their customers leave.
TARP Worldwide, conducted a survey to understand why customers leave businesses, and the results are interesting…
Here are the results from the survey:
|Percentage||Reason for Leaving|
|14%||Unhappy with product|
|9%||Lured away by competition|
|5%||Influenced by a friend|
Amazing! When it comes to keeping customers, how we serve them is over four times more important than what we actually sell as a product or service!
Poor service reflects an attitude of indifference on the part of employees.
It’s pretty clear that in order for our organizations to thrive, we have to focus on the customer service experience.
Best-selling author John Maxwell tells of a story he calls “Remember Me?”
“I’m the fellow who goes into a restaurant, sits down patiently, and waits while the waitresses do everything but take my order.
I’m the fellow who goes into a department store and stands quietly while the salesclerks finish their little chitchat.
I’m the fellow who goes into a reception area, on time for a business appointment, and stands by the desk while the receptionist finished her personal phone call.
Yes, you might say, I’m a good guy. But do you know who else I am?
I’m the fellow who never comes back. It amuses me to see you spending money every year to try to get me back to your company, when I was there in the first place, and all you had to do to keep me was to show me a little courtesy.”
Over the years, I’ve learned practical ways for leaders to help their people deliver extraordinary customer service.
For example, at my company, we practiced a principle we call “Nside/Outside”.
This principle highlights the relationship between the internal customer and the internal supplier.
Our service to our external customer can only be as good as our service to each other.
Nside/Outside is a simple principle that produced remarkable results for our company.
In my next blog post, I will share three steps to ensure that your external customers stay with your business.
Do you know a “Carey” wherever you do business? Were you surprised by the above survey results? If someone took a survey at your place of business, what kind of results would they find? Please share your thoughts by clicking here and share this blog post with a friend and co-worker.
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