Over the last several weeks, I have been listening to various people share tips on being a great salesman, a memorable company, and standing out from the crowd. Some of this advice has come by way of Success magazine publisher, Darren Hardy, through his blog and interviews with social media experts, small business leaders and personal development gurus.
Much of this information seems to be common sense: go the extra mile, offer good customer service, make a customer's experience memorable, deliver what you say you can deliver, be the best in your field, do the unexpected...you get the idea. While this may seem like common sense, it is certainly not a common experience.
When was the last time you had a wow experience when shopping, dining or working with a salesperson or service provider? Well, it happened for me tonight. I can't say I have ever had an experience quite like this before.
I decided tonight to try Chick-Fil-A, largely because my nephew and son kept insisting that I would like it and could find something healthy to eat. I was greeted by a smiling cashier who stepped right up to the edge of the counter, looked me in the eye and genuinely seemed to want to help me. That in itself seemed a bit rare. I admitted that I had never eaten in a Chick-Fil-A and asked for some information on their salads and other healthy options. The cashier gave me clear, helpful information and when asked which was her favorite, gave me a concise answer and her opinion. I chose my salad and pulled out my money.
As I handed her my cash, she stated, "Oh, since this is your first time with us, your order will be free tonight." "Are you kidding?" I asked with disbelief written all over my face. "Yes, we'd like to do this for you." I stammered some more questions and she said matter-of-factly, "We do this all the time. It's alright."
When my meal was ready, a young man stepped forward, called me by name (because the cashier had asked me for my first name), and handed me my food with eye contact and a smile. I had started to wonder if I was really in a fast food restaurant.
It is one thing to listen to talks that tell you what good business practices should be and how to wow a customer. It is quite another to be the recipient of such practices. I thanked the manager and told him how impressed I was and that I would share my experience, and I am.
So when was the last time you had remarkable service, a wow experience somewhere or received a product that was better than you expected?
And, as I am asking myself, when was the last time you gave this kind of service to someone else? Hmmm... really makes you think.