Through the years, many of Andesa Services’ innovations and system improvements were achieved because a staff member was listening to a client and was willing to figure out how we could do something we had never done before. It amazes me how some of the best customer service I’ve experienced occurred because of the “can-do” attitude of a staff member.
Several years ago, the Andesa Services Board of Directors was meeting in the Pinehurst area of North Carolina. Our trip featured a couple of days of business meetings and a couple of days of golf. Our travel arrangements were coordinated through Tobacco Road Travel and our agent, JoAnna Martin, in particular. JoAnna was both professional and polite.
Our plans included staying at a house together as a group, and we had a desire to cook out as part of our retreat time together. JoAnna began to explain how the house was equipped and where the nearest grocery stores were located. “We’re only in town a short time with not a lot of extra availability. Could we pay you to shop and stock the house with groceries before we arrive?” we inquired.
“We’ve never done that before,” was the immediate reply. After a pause, JoAnna followed with, “Sure, I can do that.”
We provided her a list with specific beverage and grocery requests. We later learned JoAnna had to go out of the state to find certain brand items from our list. When we arrived, our house included everything we had requested.
Providing great customer service creates unique and memorable experiences
How many chances do you have to WOW your customers; to create a memorable experience? How often do you say, “Sure, I can do that?”
What made dealing with JoAnna special was her willingness to go out of her way to meet our expectations.
I don’t know to what extent our request inconvenienced her. Once she agreed to accept the “out of the normal” assignment, she persevered to make sure the details of our request were addressed – very impressive.
Our encounter with JoAnna serves to remind us:
- We judge service not necessarily by what happens, but by how what transpires compares to what we expected to happen. Going out of state to find every single thing on our list was beyond what we expected – but it was most appreciated.
- Creating a unique experience in a service business is the objective. No customer wants to feel like a number. “Sure I can do that,” is a much better response than, “That’s not how we do things.”
- Every time you interact with a client is an opening to expand the brand. You create the opportunity to make dealing with you an extraordinary and memorable encounter. You never know who will share their experience, what you may learn or how it may lead to more business.
- Great customer service experiences are timeless. I still tell the story of Joanna’s “can-do” attitude years later.
Individuals with can-do attitudes are a must to create a culture of memorable customer service. When was the last time you said, “Sure, I can do that?”