Bad customer experience can ruin your whole day. All too often call centers put you on hold for far too long or your waiter gets your order wrong. So when we run into excellent customer experiences, we like to celebrate them and learn from what was done right. Last week, I heard this story from my colleague, Debora Haskel, about customer service that surpassed expectations.
Her team wanted to celebrate the achievement of one of its members, Laura. Earlier that week, Laura received IWCO Direct’s Distinguished Service Award. The team decided to go out for lunch at one of their favorite local spots, Lago Tacos in Excelsior, MN. But before they could enjoy the homemade chips and guacamole, they had to smooth out a few snags.
The first challenge was when they found out their scheduled lunch was during a bi-weekly status update call with our client, Patrick, in Connecticut. When Debora called to explain the situation, Patrick graciously agreed to move the call so they could celebrate. Even though Patrick is a client of ours, he exhibited some hallmarks of an excellent customer experience.
First, he listened. It seems like a simple concept, but so often people forget to listen to their business partners and try to understand where they’re coming from. Patrick didn’t immediately shoot down the idea because it changed an established routine. Instead, he listened to the whole story, not just the part about altering something. He was able to acknowledge the importance of Laura’s award and work with us to come up with an alternative time that would meet everyone’s needs.
With that hurdle resolved, the team got ready for lunch. Lago Tacos doesn’t take reservations, but with the large group they were bringing, Debora decided to call and give the restaurant a heads-up. The young man who answered the phone was polite and helped her connect with Emi, a member of the staff who had helped the team get a table a few months ago. To Debora’s surprise, Emi remembered the group, even though they had only come in once before, and she even remembered the number of people who had come in.
Emi had a table for nine ready to go before they arrived, even though it was during the lunch hour rush. She provided stellar service, anticipating needs even before they became needs, such as providing recommendations before anyone had to ask. She took care of all the details so Debora’s team could enjoy themselves. Emi made it easy to do business with Lago Tacos, and as a result, everyone left full, happy and wanting to return.
What positive customer experiences have you had lately? What did they get right? Comment and share what you appreciate when it comes to service—we’d love to hear from you!
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