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Jun 24

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Creating Great Customer Service Culture

Customer Service Tip- First Impression



As I have mentioned in my previous post, that another important factor to marketing your restaurant is customer service. People will remember what you or your employees have done or not done. Not just good service, but memorable service. If they had a memorable experience in your place then they will tell their friends and their friends will tell their own friends. And the list goes on and on. That’s what we call word of mouth advertisement. Today’s customers have high expectations of any product or services as there is a lot establishment selling the same product or services. Remember The Customer is the Life and Blood of any Restaurant. You won’t be profitable for long unless you have a good customer culture in your establishment. There was one study done by the Ohio State University which states that up to 60% of restaurants failed within three years.
In my customer service training, I like to show a poster that I purchased to be put up in the outlets. The poster reads “If We DON’T take care of our Customers then Other will“. As mentioned above, nowadays the customer have a large variety to choose from. This is apparent with the higher number of food outlets opening. Even large franchises are seeing stiff competition. Formerly there were only A&W, McDonalds and Kentucky Fried Chicken. Now you can see Domino Pizza, Subway and many more. With all the hip places opening up everywhere, you need to constantly be vigilant on whether your customer is happy. Whether his experience is good or bad, he will definitely tell everyone. So customer satisfaction begins with your employees.

First Impressions is important in Customer Service

When I was posted overseas to open a new hotel, I worked under a Hotel Manager who like to quote this saying “You only get one chance to make a good first impression, you won’t get a second chance”. This saying is especially true in Customer Service. In the hospitality industry the Receptionist and Wait Staff are the frontline staff of the hotel. They are the first person customers sees before they get their room or food. If the Front Line staff is professional, friendly and is able to handle a customer’s needs, then that customer will have a positive impression of the hotel or its restaurant. Customer will not know how good your food is or how beautifully decorated. His only first impression of your place is how your frontline staff treats him. This experience can lead to repeat business and also as great word of mouth advertising tool. On the other hand, if the Front Liners are unprofessional, uninformed and unable to fulfill a customer’s needs, then this will result in a negative impression. And then the customer will definitely voice out his/her grievances. Now with the help of the World Wide Web, these grievances can reach millions of people.
So the staff should be constantly briefed on the company and product knowledge as well be trained on the necessary customer service skills to exceed customer expectations. How the staff is dressed is also important. If they are comfortable and look professional, they will project a positive image to the guest. I have noticed that most people feel professional if they are dressed in a suit and tie, then if they are in a t shirt. Reason being in a T shirt they will feel more casual and therefore take things too lightly. Even the customer will feel better and more confident talking to someone who is nicely dressed then someone who is scruffy looking.

If We DON’T take care of our Customer then Other will

 

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It’s crucial you know what your guests are thinking. It’s estimated that only 1 in 20 people will complain when they have a problem in a restaurant. The problem for the operator, is that many of these people simply don’t come back.

A well-conceived Customer Comment Card system will give you immediate and ongoing feedback of how your guests’ perceive your restaurant, both good and bad. While it’s always nice to hear the accolades, it’s actually better to get the bad news – so you can do something about it! If you respond to a complaint quickly and show you genuinely care, you have a good shot at retaining customers before they decide to leave and never come back.

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1 comment

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