My answer to the title of this post would be “a whole heckuva lot”. That is why we stress the importance of calling customers by their names when greeting them. In my opinion, it is a sign of respect to call someone by their name. Your name is the most important word in the universe to you and is music to your ears. Same thing goes for your customers.
This past weekend I attended the National Association of Check Cashers convention in Marco Island, Florida, and used Delta Airlines to get there. I had a total of four flights in all; two to get to Fort Myers and two flights back in to Memphis. During the pre-boarding and boarding process for my first three flights each and every Delta Airline employee called me by name. Now, I’m not really famous but my name is on the front of the ticket each employee handled and, even though they didn’t know me personally, I was still just as excited each time they called me by name. I was highly impressed with Delta and thought to myself that they sure were doing a great job with customer service. Not only were they calling me by name but all the employees I encountered seemed happy and upbeat. . . until my final flight.
On the last flight the customer service wasn’t bad. It was just normal. As I boarded the plane taking me from Atlanta to Memphis the Delta agent scanned my ticket just like all the other flights. But, she never made eye contact and to my dismay she didn’t call me by name. My balloon had just been popped.
As I mentioned, I was really excited with the service I was getting from the Delta employees up until that last flight. And once again, the service wasn’t that bad on the last flight but it just wasn’t what I had come to expect after three flights and three outstanding Delta experiences within the past few days. (Please reread the prior two sentences because that is my whole point)
Outstanding customer service MUST be provided on a daily basis. The key term being “daily basis” because it is not the three visits in a row with great service your customers go to work the next morning talking about to their co-workers. It’s the fourth visit when, for whatever reason, your customer feels slighted by the lack of attention and respect he receives in your office that gets talked about at work the next day.
As Meredith mentioned a few days ago on this blog, this is “National Customer Service Week”. Let’s make that a daily holiday in our locations! — Luke
“Even your most loyal customers always have a choice about where to take their business.” Marilyn Suttle