How great or outstanding is the service that you provide and deliver to your customers or the people you serve?
How great a job does your organization serve your community?
Do the people you work with and the people that work for you deliver outstanding value and service each day?
Recently I had the privilege of attending a trade show. I was actually working the trade show as an exhibitor and it was awesome. If you’ve ever worked a trade show, you know how it is. They cram you in this little tiny 8×8 booth. There’s four massive spotlights shining all over you. You’re hot and you’re talking all day long. You’re meeting people. It’s exhausting but it’s energetic at the same time.
The people that attended this show were part of a local hospitality association. I spent 15 years in the hospitality industry. I met a lot of people that I’ve known for years. These people are pros. A lot of these people have worked in the business for fifteen, twenty, thirty and forty years. They own multiple properties. They provide outstanding service in each of their properties.
As it goes, I was working the show, got a little tired and thirsty. I went over to the beverage area. I met Bartender #1. I walked up and I asked him, “Sir, can I have a glass of club soda?” He said, “You sure can, but you need a ticket.” I said, “Ah, okay. Where’s the ticket booth?” He said, “Well, it’s way down the hall and it’s way over there, but you know what…club soda?” He turns away, he grabs a glass of club soda, pours me a glass, and hands it to me.
I said, “Okay, what do I owe you? I have to get some tickets.” He goes, “No, no. Hold on.” And he turns away and he whistles and he turns back to me smiling as he was expecting me to be gone and I said, “Well, thank you very much,” and off I went. He said, “No problem. You’re our guest.” I thought that’s interesting.
I walked away and went back to the trade show floor. The next day again the same thing. I come down the way and I was looking for the people working at the beverage ticket booth. I found them. Nobody was there; they must have been on a break or something.
So I walked up to Bartender #2 and I said, “Look, I’m trying to buy some tickets. Can I pay you cash? I just need an orange juice for my friend and a club soda for my self.” He said, “Are you working today?” I said, “Yes, I’m an exhibitor in the trade show.” He says, “You know what? You’re working, I’m working. You’re our guest, we really value that, so here you go.” Bartender #2 gives me the orange juice along with the club soda.
The word that kept coming out was “value” and “guest.”
We value you as our guest. Everywhere at the Fairmont Lake Louise, the people there were outstanding. Whether I was at the deli, the coffee shop, a restaurant, a lounge, the people there and the bartenders were outstanding. They deliver great service. They get how to value a guest.
I was at the Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise, it’s in the heart of the Canadian Rocky Mountains. If you ever have a chance to get there, I really encourage you to go there.
Watch the Guest Service Story video with a little snippet at the end that shows the breathtaking views that you can look forward to experiencing.
How did this service make me feel?
How did Bartender #1 and Bartender #2 make me feel?
The drink tickets were $5.50 each, so it’s $11. I felt excellent in saving $11 on two different occasions, but even more, I felt well-cared for by the people at Fairmont Lake Louise. When I think about it a little more and I drill down deeper into it, they provide outstanding service and that made me feel exceptional.
Do you give your people permission to give away a few free drinks once in awhile?
I really want to encourage you to think about what is the equivalent of a free drink for you and your business. Maybe it’s a product sample or maybe it’s an unexpected service that the client or customer didn’t ask for it. Maybe it’s performing a minor service for them and writing “no charge” on the invoice when they receive that.
How do you encourage exceptional guest service?
Now, the word that you might not be familiar with is the word “guest.” In the hospitality industry we use the terminology “guest” because we believe that whether you have a restaurant, a buffet line, a movie theater, an entertainment complex, a hotel, that person is your guest. They are under your care and attention for the time that you are working with them. Walt Disney talks about every person coming through his gate as a guest.
Think of three new ways that you can change the word “customer service” to “guest service”. Think of three new ways that you and your people can add value to the people you serve. I encourage you to share at the bottom of this page some comments.
Tell me, how do you add value to your customers and your clients?
How do ensure that that value is noticed and recognized in your business?
I’d like to talk with you about that and I’d like to have a good conversation with you in the comments below.
I know over two-thirds of our people in our Samurai Innovation dojo are business owners. Our other members are professional people in their organization and they’re working hard to provide outstanding value and service in their business.
Enjoy the breathtaking view of Lake Louise and all of its frozen, winter glory. It’s magnificent. If you ever have a chance to go there, I highly recommend it. When I was there and I was shooting the quick video and I was thinking about this article for you.
I couldn’t help but think about the focus and it was the focal point of Lake Louise and I think every business needs a focal point and when you’re thinking about providing outstanding service.
I am a grower of human capability and a business builder. The best part of my life is helping people become stronger and develop their skills, talents and character in order to lead powerful lives. I have had the great privilege to study under some of the greatest minds of business, leadership, health and fitness along with the most talented Martial Arts instructors. My passion is helping people to become even more powerful in life than they already are.