Sometimes a story comes along that truly changes your perspective on the world around you. It makes you want to be a better person and makes you wonder why there aren’t more stories like this on our nightly news. Since tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day we decided it was important to share some of the most powerful acts of customer service we’ve heard about this year. Rather than listing the “best rated” customer service companies, we dive a little deeper into how companies can leave a lasting impression on their customers.
These are not your everyday accounts of resolving customer complaints, but are surprisingly unexpected acts of generosity that are truly worth being thankful for. It’s important to remember that although we may be divided on a number of issues, paying it forward will always bring us together.
This story comes out of Alberta, Canada where Paula Schultz decided to leave her SUV at an Original Joe’s parking lot overnight. Schultz made the decision to leave her car after having a couple drinks at the pub and restaurant and came back the next morning to find a piece of paper stuck to her windshield. Her initial thought when approaching her vehicle was that she had received a parking ticket *drats!* but upon further inspection was a typed letter to the woman that read:
“Just wanted to thank you for leaving your car parked overnight. I’m not sure if you had consumed alcohol at our restaurant or not, but we wanted to thank you for not drinking and driving. Enclosed is a voucher good for 1lb of our delicious chicken wings. Please accept this as a thank you for being responsible. Life is valuable, have a great weekend.”
Signed, Managing Partner, Original Joe’s, Jay McLean.
That’s one way to not only send an important message about drinking and driving but by truly valuing your customers and making them want to come back time and time again. Original Joe’s truly took a unique approach to great customer hospitality.
Earlier this year, Forbes’ resident customer service writer, Micah Solomon, shared a story about hospitality that went above and beyond expectations. The Rosenbergs* were travelling from San Francisco to Hong Kong with their son who happens to have multiple life-threatening food allergies. This would make any parent extremely anxious throughout travel so prior to their departure, Mrs. Rosenberg wrote to the Hong Kong Ritz Carlton outlining her son’s allergies. Instead of a generic reply of compliance, the Executive Chef of the hotel sent them a personalized letter with a detailed list of foods he could prepare to accommodate their son. The hotel staff even went as far to prepare a thermos of hot food everyday so that they could travel around the city, with their son, worry-free.
This story of heartwarming hospitality and personalization shows that a little time and effort can go a long way in your customers’ eyes and builds the kind of reputation all hotels should aspire towards. You can read the full story here.
Chris Prugh, a service manager at a De Leon Springs Winn-Dixie took his job to the next level when he was helping the woman carry her bags to her car. The two engaged in casual conversation and it was brought to Chris’ attention that Sharon needed back surgery, but had put it off because she didn’t have anyone to care for her pets (three dogs, three cats and two birds). The Winn-Dixie employee decided that this was an opportunity for him to pay it forward and offered his humble assistance to care for her pets while she was in the hospital. Sharon was absolutely floored by the offer of generosity and has since seen just how much he was willing to do for her during this difficult time. In return, Sharon nominated Prugh for a local award to thank him for his selflessness during a difficult time.
How can other companies in the service industry learn from this? Treat your customers like family and they will always reward you in return.