JJ's (July '05) Tips in this issue:
1. Managing the Customer's Journey
2. JJ's Favorite Quotes
3. Tele-Coaching & Tele-Mentoring
Use the following tips as training tools.
Present this situation to your group and brainstorm solutions together, or submit your own situation question to be answered in an upcoming newsletter.
How do you manage your customer's journey so they want to experience more of your service and products, and even take part of you home with them?
While my husband and I attended my National Speakers Association Convention in Atlanta, Georgia this month, a young woman called my office and inquired about our customer service and management training for her staff.
I immediately called her during the convention, and after hearing about her current challenges and what she wanted to accomplish, we mapped out a plan of action that started with management and ended with extraordinary service and sales training for front line staff.
After the convention ended and before we were to catch our Atlanta flight back to California, we had planned a driving adventure to Nashville (several hours away) to see the Grand Ole Opry and the huge Gaylord Opryland Hotel.
During the drive, my thoughts went to how I could help the woman who called about the customer service training and management training. You see, when you take time off work to have an adventure and recharge, your mind wonders, ponders and gets more creative to help your customers.
When we arrived in Nashville without hotel reservations because Opryland Hotel was totally booked, we saw a hotel near the Grand Ole Opry with a huge banner that said, "Grand Opening". It became our home away from home for the next three days while we absorbed the colorful history of the area.
On securing tickets to the Grand Ole Opry performance the next night, we learned that we could take a backstage tour of the Grand Ole Opry that afternoon.
When we entered the tour from the gift shop we were greeted by an enthusiastic and smiling woman tour guide who said she had been with the Opry over twenty five years.
She started the tour on time because we were there, even though 35 other people who had been scheduled to join us on the tour had not shown up yet.
She guided our small group of 15 down hallway after hallway of famous country singer's pictures as she told us stories about each one of them.
She interacted with all of us and answered our questions as if we were the most important people she would ever meet. She made us feel so SPECIAL.
It was a treat to see the dressing rooms of the stars, the huge sound proof TV studio that Hee Haw was seen from years ago, and the green room where the stars wait to go on stage.
Then to our surprise, she took us right out on the Grand Ole Opry stage with its big red barn backdrop, microphones across the front of the stage and the famous round hardwood circle from the Ryman Auditorium, Nashville's Premier Performance Hall and the Opry's second home. That circle was where the stars
have stood and performed for 80 years. Substance and history were rolled into that authentic hardwood circle.
That's when our guide really made us feel SPECIAL! She invited us to stand on the circle and sing, even though it was just a Happy Birthday song to someone on our tour. She said, "Now you can say you have sung on the Grand Ole Opry stage."
The next night when we entered the Grand Ole Opry again to see the live evening radio show broadcasts, which are made in half hour segments with commercials, we were handed a colorful jewel-toned rust, burgundy and gold program. On the cover, across the top was written, TAKE THE JOURNEY, GRAND OLE OPRY, 80 Years of Great Country, followed by two of the longest running sponsor's logos and a picture of a guitar.
Everyone on the show took us on an entertaining and heartwarming journey of the past and present days at the Opry. They made us remember times gone by with Minnie Pearl and her hat with the price tag, our favorite singers, and the old time commercials that still work well today.
They impressed us with their professional ease in which they did everything from moving instruments, bands and the 20 singers who performed on stage during the 5 half-hour back-to-back shows. It started with the guides treating us individually like VIP's to find our perfect seats. Every person working at the Opry made us feel they had welcomed us into their home because we were SPECIAL guests.
They even had us laughing, which is so good for us, when they made fun of their long-standing old fashioned sponsors. Again, we felt SPECIAL to be in on the fun, and we heard every word they wanted us to hear.
AND their advertising worked! Later we started watching for the Cracker Barrel logo on the signs near the freeway so we could stop and experience their old country store and down home cooking before we returned to Atlanta to fly home.
What kind of journey do you take your customers on when they visit you? Whether it is on-line, by phone or in person, you are taking them on a journey to match their needs with your products and services.
Every single person working in your operation should be a tour guide for your company. Train your people to enjoy the journey, with a smile, and to enthusiastically and confidently communicate well with your customers. If they are not having fun working there, they won't make it fun for customers to do business with you either.
Help them take your customers on a fun filled journey and remember to make your staff feel SPECIAL, and they will make your customer feel SPECIAL too!