Exceeding Customer Expectations Rock Star & Resort Style

Exceeding customer expectations isn’t reserved for rock stars and ultra-luxury resorts. When you repeatedly give customers more than they expect, you can count on loyal fans and five-star ratings!

Exceeding Customer Expectations Rock Star Style

Welcome to my basement and welcome to my Doobies Brothers display! Yep, I’m a Doobie Brothers fan! I discovered the Doobies way back in the 1970s when I was still a college student. I went to a concert and frankly, I was smitten! The Doobie Brothers were wonderful! They had great energy, great material, and they delivered more than I expected! (Here’s one of my favorites from their many hits!)

Over the years, I’ve continued to follow the Doobie Brothers and they’ve continued to do just that — give me more than I expect! I believe there’s a lesson to be learned there. For those of us who have customers, fans and followers — as long as we continue exceeding customer expectations — giving them more than they expect — then frankly, they will keep coming back for more!

I wrote a customer service book about Willie Watson, a cab driver in Columbia, South Carolina. I don’t know if Willie ever saw the Doobie Brothers in concert, but he certainly understood the principle of exceeding customer expectations. Here are two practical ways you begin exceeding customer expectations today.

#1 Write a Thank You Note

Whenever possible and practical, write a personal thank you note or email to your customers. Most of us don’t anticipate high levels of service. Sending a personal thank you note is an easy step toward exceeding the typical customer’s expectations.

#2 Don’t Point, Escort

I credit the Ritz Carlton Amelia Island, Florida with this idea.

After a presentation soundcheck at the spacious Ritz Carlton convention center, I found myself completely turned around. Maria from housekeeping greeted me and asked how she could help. When I asked for directions to the restaurant, Maria politely said, “Sir, please follow me.”

For several minutes I followed Maria. Finally, the restaurant came into sight and Maria introduced me to the restaurant hostess. Before Maria departed, I said to her, “Maria, thank you for your help. It was very kind of you, but you didn’t have to bring me all the way here. You could have just pointed the way and I’m sure I would have found it eventually.”

Maria looked me in the eye, smiled confidently and said, “Sir, at the Ritz Carlton, we don’t point our guests, we escort them.”

Lesson learned!

If your team needs some help refocusing on customer expectations, take a look at our Secrets to Influential Service & Professionalism training. If you think we can help — let’s talk!

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Phillip Van Hooser
Author: Phillip Van Hooser
Phillip Van Hooser, CSP, CPAE is committed to helping organizations transform their business outcomes by transforming the talent of their people. He is an award-winning keynote speaker and author on leadership, service and communication. His popular book, “Willie's Way: 6 Secrets for Wooing, Wowing and Winning Customers and Their Loyalty” re-releases September 3. Connect with Phil on LinkedIn and Facebook.

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