The Customer Experience Tells the Story – Good or Bad

There is an article in the Post Tribune today that proves a very good point – People don’t value your product or service that you sell nearly as much as the experience you provide for them.

The industry that is spotlighted in this article is the gaming industry.  Right off the bat it recognizes that people generally lose more money overall than they win while gaming.  There are also a multitude of gaming facilities that are begging for you to come to their casinos.

But, as the article clearly states, it’s the service that keeps them coming back, OR in some cases as told in this article, the service, or lack thereof, makes them feel strongly enough to go elsewhere.

Most players loved the comps, the friendly staff, the incentives, the feeling of genuine fun to be had by all.

But when service is overlooked, it has immediate consequences for the casino.  When customers are treated poorly, they will go elsewhere.  They will also tell the story of their unhappy experience to others.  In today’s world of social media, bad news travels faster than it ever has before.

The one story that stood out to me in this article was told by Joyce.  Joyce was playing at a table and enjoying herself.  The dealer took a break and was replaced by someone who clearly did not want to be there at all.  She even went so far as to tell the players at the table that she just wanted her next break.  But what makes it even worse is the fact that management was observing everything that was going on and did nothing about it.

“The pit boss was standing right there, and he didn’t say anything to her. She was rude and crude and abusive to players, and it hit me that even her supervisor didn’t care that that’s how she was. If even the supervisors don’t care about how they treat the customers, I’ll take my money elsewhere.”

This is a classic case of (bad) leadership by example. By leadership not doing anything about it, they subliminally condoned the poor service and sent a message to the players that their customer experience was not important to them.  As customers, they were not appreciated or valued.

Business leaders and management today need to do everything that they can to provide excellent customer service training.  When customer centric businesses are asked what the most important component of their business is, they immediately acknowledge that it is their customer. These companies will do anything they can to make the customer more than happy to keep them coming back.  The smart companies focus on their customers and the positive experiences that they can provide.

The successful companies are the ones that want positive stories told about them and will do everything possible to partner with and please their customers.  Think of how many Disney stories you have heard or that you tell others.  I’d venture to guess that the positive stories outnumber the negative ones any day of the week.

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