Don’t Be A Kiosk

Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

It is never enough to comply with requests. Some people approach customer service like this: Take a request, comply with the request, repeat. Take a request, comply with the request, repeat. Kiosks can do the same thing. Don’t be a kiosk.

The true power in the human element of service excellence is how you make someone feel. As a result of being served by you, people should literally feel better about themselves. In fact, they should feel engaged, inspired and renewed! (Excerpt from The Next Level in Service Excellence by Bryan K. Williams)

Being proactive in sales goes hand-to-hand with knowing our customers. Earlier, I posted a blog touting the premise that ‘customers do business with people they like and know’. Obviously, if you know your customer and their needs, you can be proactive in terms of sales – both at the front desk and for groups.

For example – in the case of front desk salesmanship…..

Mr. Thomas from ABC Company has noted in his brand rewards profile that he always wants a room on the first floor and prefers feather pillows. Why do you wait for Mr. Thomas to arrive at the desk and then blindly ask him if a room on the third floor is okay? The customer has taken the time to complete his profile with his preferences and you have taken time to run the arrival reports.

Mr. Thomas should have been pre-blocked into a first floor room during the A.M. shift! If you don’t have a first floor room available, then when he checks in, the GSR should tell Mr. Thomas. “I am sorry. I know you prefer to have a room on the first floor, but due to our arrival and departure patterns this week we are unable to honor your request. I have a room on the second floor near the stairs, or I have a room on the third floor near the elevator. Which would you prefer?” Once you assign him in a room then you can tell Mr. Thomas that you will have the houseman bring up a few extra feather pillows. This is the definition of proactive!

In the case of sales…….

A repeat meeting planner has called to book another group into your hotel. You know this customer well because they regularly book meetings. Be proactive – know your customers and their history. If you have done a post-meeting summary from the last time they were in the hotel then you know what went right and what went wrong. Make reference to their past needs, “Ms. Jones, would you like the room set with rounds again for this meeting?” Or, “I remember your group enjoyed the fresh peach muffins last year. Would you like for me to arrange them again for this meeting?”

‘So don’t just comply…anticipate needs. Add value to your customers’ lives by giving something that they didn’t realize they were missing. When you are able to do that consistently, then service becomes much more than a chore, or something that “you don’t mind doing”. It becomes a privilege and an honor. Knowing that you have made a positive difference in the life of someone else is truly what service is all about.’

Happy anticipating!


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