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A Customer Service Story:   At the weekend I was running a workshop. I like to arrive early to make sure everything is set up well in advance and I can be ready to welcome everyone.  So on Saturday I turned up at 8.30am (as I said I would) to find that the room hadn’t been cleared from the night before and the staff on duty weren’t aware of my booking.  Not a great start! 

Once they realised they were super helpful and one man (the only one available) worked really hard to get the room set up for me, and I was able to start the workshop on time at 10am.  I don’t like to think what would have happened if I’d arrived at the last minute!

On Monday, I contacted the person I’d booked with, who duly wrote back apologising saying she “could not have been clearer to staff” that there was a booking.  Warning bells started going off in my head (metaphorically  speaking), because it definitely wasn’t clear to the staff there on Saturday morning, and more importantly it suggests that the system will not change.  (I hope it will.)

Apologising to me is like addressing the symptom (a complaint) and not the underlying condition (a system that clearly is not foolproof).

Lesson:  Address the root cause:  adjust the system!  Great customer service is an on-going process, feedback, adjust, feedback, adjust, feedback, adjust……

The second thing really had very little to do with my workshop but was so glaringly obvious to me that I have to share!

Next to our room and for our use was a toilet equipped for the disabled.  Imagine my surprise when I had to stand on tiptoe to see in the mirror.  OK, OK…. it’s no surprise that I’m short, but this was a facility for the disabled and anyone in a wheelchair wouldn’t have a hope of using the mirror.  Surely it’s not difficult to work that out.

Lesson:  Anticipate your customers’ needs – it’s not rocket science, just think about it from their point of view and if you’re not sure, ask them!

Getting these things right makes doing business so much easier.  Let’s keep ‘em smiling!