In the service industry, employees are often reminded to “Blow Away the Customer”. Time after time, meeting after meeting the same encouragement is given – remember to blow away the customer but what exactly does it mean? Do employees understand what your goal is when you say blow away the customer? Think about it for a minute. Can you really verbalize what the expression means? I am sure that if 10 people were asked the question, what does it mean to blow away the customer; a variety of answers will be given. If this is the case, then why do we leave the action of blowing away the customer, up to the perceived understanding of individual employees?
Wouldn’t it be better to outline exactly what you mean by blow away the customer in a more specific way? By doing this every employee will understand what your goal is and your customers could be on the receiving end of consistently good service regardless of who serves them. Now this is not a fool proof remedy for any service issues you may be experiencing in your organization nor does it hold the solution for switching on employees who are switched off. However it provides clarity to ALL employees on what your service expectations are for their roles.
For example, if you are in the restaurant business, your idea of blow way the customer could mean something different for your hostesses, your servers, your kitchen staff, etc. Your customers have a different expectation of each of those roles. They expect your hostess to have an engaging personality, they expect to be greeted with a warm smile, they expect to be escorted to their dining table promptly & professionally, they expect an apology for any delays, they expect to be advised of who will be serving them and they expect to be
checked on during their dining experience. These are not the same expectations for the server. Expectations for their server will include the server being knowledgeable about the menu items, advising of any specials, being able to respond to questions about recommendations and what are the most popular dishes, being attentive to drink refills, noticing when dining plates need to be removed and the timing between courses. Both of these employees are vital to the success of the restaurant, however, the service they offer in their individual roles to the customers is different as will be the manner in which they accomplish blowing away the customer. They must work hand in hand for the customer to have an overall excellent dining experience with the restaurant however the roles clearly dictate that the manner in which they blow away the customer will differ.
As I wrap up this article, I encourage you to ensure employees properly understand what blow away the customer means to you, your organization and to their role. Let’s move away from blanket statements that do not clearly articulate your customer service goals and let’s ensure we provide employees with the necessary steps or the service sequence that should be followed in order for customers to have consistently above average experiences.
Well, that is, if you are looking for repeat and loyal customers.