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A great example of phenomenal customer service

3rd Apr 2017
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It was a lovely spring day where myself, my wife, and family were visiting a beautiful National Trust property - Castle Drogo, to take our dogs for a walk along the amazing Fingle Gorge.

We decided to have a cup of coffee and a cake before we started, as we know the standards at the National Trust cafes are always good.

Everything was normal: high quality, good choice, very clean and well organised, but the server really blew our socks off when she served the coffee: and she only did a small thing.

My wife ordered a latte and when she handed it to us it wasn’t quite full and there was a small jug of hot milk beside it.

We didn’t need to ask: she said: ‘I’ve not filled it quite to the top, so I’ve given you a bit of extra milk, as I can see you have dogs and will be sitting outside, and I know how easy it is to spill a coffee when it’s full to the top.’

A small act, but genuinely stunning in every way.

  • Proactive: she saw our situation and used her common sense.
  • Kind: of course.
  • Professional: in every way.
  • Making life a little harder in the short term (but MUCH easier in the long term): and this is a VERY important point.
  • Small and unassuming: but magical all the same.

When I remarked on how impressed and grateful I was, she just said: ‘Oh, we just like doing the best we can: it’s easy to do when you like who you work with and admire who you work for’.

Lessons to be learnt for many drink serving institutions here, however the REAL issue is this:

Stories of ‘great’ and ‘poor’ customer experiences are all over the web, and, in themselves, can have a small value (but only a small one): the REAL opportunity is to set up SYSTEMS that make this kind of behaviour standard across every member of your team:

  • Systems to build team loyalty and love of your organisation.
  • Systems to ensure your team continually focus on the customer’s REAL (emotional) needs over their physical ones.
  • Systems to gather, measure, congratulate, and hold people accountable.
  • Systems to build repeat business and referrals through this.
  • Systems to continually improve in all areas inch by inch.

These are the systems we call ‘Sales through Service’: for more information on them, please email us at [email protected]

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