I am amazed at how little common sense is used in the delivery of customer service. Recently a group was eating in the fine dining restaurant of a national hotel chain. One of the diners asked Ava, our server, about the lasagna. After a pause, she responded with, “It’s just OK. Personally, I like Stouffer’s better”. Not quite a ringing endorsement and not an appropriate one in this restaurant. She even paused which should have given her time to edit her thoughts and chosen a different response.
An audience member in Bakersfield California came up and told me this tale. Her husband needed to visit the Department of Motor Vehicles, he traveled to a smaller office outside of the city and arrived at opening hours. He was pleased to see when entering the offices that he was first in line. His plan of going to a smaller office had worked. He went straight to the clerk and the empty counter. Her response was, “Sir, you’ll have to take a number and we will call you”. He did as was told and about a minute later, the same person paged him to come up to the counter. His wife reported that he found it amazing and laughable.
What has happened to common sense and thinking before talking? Where is the leadership? It is time to hire, train and expect better from your team.