John DiJulius | Customer Experience Blog


Be incapable of discouragement | Talk less โ€“ smile more | Verne Harnish Keynoting the Summit
June 15, 2016, 6:48 am
Filed under: Customer Service, Customer Service Training, Verne Harnish
Talk less – smile more

Richard Branson shares great advice in his blog titled, Talk less – smile more. “If everyone [talked less and smiled more] the world would be a happier place. Stop to really listen, pay attention to your companion, and truly hear what they are saying, is all too rare. Often we are too quick to step in and talk over them, especially in the business world. When you take a step back, smile, and listen, it can be really rewarding. It will also often end up in a more meaningful connection, which will in turn lead to more smiles.”

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Ashton Kutcher; Reverse Secret Service; Chick-fil-Aโ€™s Mission; Small companies losing

The Great Retail Experience Race: Local vs. National – Recently, Ashley Verrill, a Customer Service Analyst at Software Advice, did a six month study comparing the Customer experience of small, local-based retailers versus comparable national chain stores. The research was based on a team of 20 secret shoppers who conducted 200 site visits, each lasting at least 15 minutes. These secret shoppers were focused on things such as whether employees told them about sales or specials during their visit, or if anyone tried to upsell or cross-sell them.   

 

Small Businesses Losing Big to the Big Guys – In every industry category but one, the national store outperformed the local shop.  It appears the national retailers understand better the inherent value of upselling, cross-selling and running specials, and how those tactics maximize the marketing dollars spent getting that Customer in the door. This is an interesting article and features best-selling author Shep Hyken’s advice on why the national brands outperformed the local brands.

 

Starbucks puts names on their apron – There is nothing revolutionary about having name tags for your employee; however, until now, Starbucks has never done it. I am actually surprised it took them this long since Starbucks’ mission is to create an emotional connection.  I love the idea and was embarrassed that in over 20 years, John Robert’s Spa has never instituted this simple but extremely effective tool to help build stronger relationships with Customers. The more Customers know our name, the closer they feel, and vice versa. Each name tag is going to have three lines on it; team member’s first name, the year they started with JR and the third line will read, “My passion is…” and each person’s passion will be personalized to them.

 

Reverse Secret Service – This is reverse Secret Service, where clients learn and remember things about us and it helps start a conversation and connection for future visits.  I got this idea from Westin Hotels, who designed to encourage deeper relationships between hotel employees and guests. Westin executives said that the passion tags opened a dialogue between the company’s staff and its guests, and when guests start talking, they are much more forthcoming about any issues that might concern them during their stay.  A simple phrase on a nametag encourages guests to talk and engage, and find out similarities and common interests, thus helping to break down barriers and create emotional connections.

 

Chick-fil-A Mission is to be RemarkableThis means provide an experience that makes people ‘remark’ about it. I recently received an email from someone who works at a client The DiJulius Group consults with;

 

Hi John,

 

I now can see why you use Chick-fil-A as an example in your presentations. I recently visited one of their locations for lunch. When we entered, the door was opened for us and we were thanked for coming in today. That day it was raining really hard. When leaving Chick-fil-A, an employee walked me out to the car with an umbrella over my head so I wouldn’t get wet.  I have never had a WOW experience like that from anywhere, especially a fast food restaurant. When we were leaving after I got in the car, we were thanked for dining with them today.  They have increased the service level I now expect. That’s why, starting now,  I plan on not going to any other fast food restaurant.

 

Ashton Kutcher words of wisdom – I read on Verne Harnish’s ezine (excellent resource for fast growth companies) where he wrote about three ideas Ashton Kutcher (Steve Jobs in the movie Jobs) addressed in his Teen Choice Awards speech last week – a 4 minute speech that was applicable for teens and adults. I actually sent it out to all my managers.  

 

 

John R. DiJulius III best-selling author, consultant, and keynote speaker, is the President of The DiJulius Group, the leading Customer experience consulting firm in the nation. He blogs on Customer experience trends and best practices. Learn more about The DiJulius Group or The Secret Service Summit, America’s #1 Customer Service Conference.

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The Queen of Concierge; Ownerโ€™s outburst results in social media outburst; best employee recognition idea

Best Employee Recognition Idea I recently read a great “best practice” about a simple but profound way to recognize employees. In Verne Harnish’s weekly newsletter, Legal Monkey’s 3-minute video, his Appreciation Board highlights a very simple employee recognition process anyone can duplicate for the cost of a picture frame.  Verne is the growth guy and his weekly newsletter is a fantastic resource.  Here is how you can sign up to receive Verne’s weekly newsletter.

 

Owner’s outburst on mother’s autistic child results in social media outburst – How we treat people says a great deal about what type of people we are. How we treat Customers says a great deal about what type of business we are. A Facebook post about a salon owner berating a mother whose autistic toddler was acting out during a haircut is going viral on the internet. Within 24 hours, the post had been shared more than 17,000 times and online users from Florida to California were filling out angry online user reviews of the business at various sites, including Yelp.com and Yahoo.com. Today it has been shared nearly 50,000 times! Read the article

 

The Ultimate Oxymoron – What is an oxymoron? An airline Customer service counter.  What is the ultimate oxymoron? An airline’s Customer service counter that is completely unstaffed, and has no one working at it!

 

The Queen Concierge – Since the first time I saw her speak over 15 years ago, I have been a big fan of Holly Stiel, keynote speaker and author of six books on Customer service. Holly’s initial experience started on the front lines of service in the hospitality industry. In 1976, Holly became the first female concierge in the U.S. when she created the desk at the Grand Hyatt Union Square in San Francisco. She spent the next 17 years gaining firsthand experience and in-depth understanding of the principles and practices of world-class concierges. 

 

From Concierge to Speaker – In 1992, Holly stepped out from the concierge desk with a passion for sharing the secrets and inspirations she had gained in the world of hospitality. Since then, she has been customizing and adapting programs for a wide variety of industries, ranging from Bank of America to NASCAR to Audi.  Holly Stiel is a trail-blazing service philosopher, keynote speaker, trainer and consultant. She is known for her unique, dynamic and interactive presentation style, as well as her talent for transforming companies and their cultures. Her wisdom and know how have been conveyed in 25 languages, and delivered across the globe, from Japan to Johannesburg.  Don’t miss Holly’s keynote presentation at the at the  2013 Secret Service Summit.

 

Video interview with Holly Stiel – Check out the 30-minute interview I did with Holly Stiel via Google Hangouts. Holly shares many of her pearls of wisdom on Customer service and what she is going to be sharing at the Secret Service Summit.

 

 

Johnism

  

Service is the desire to put the interest of others before ourselves.

 

John R. DiJulius III best-selling author, consultant, and keynote speaker, is the President of The DiJulius Group, the leading Customer experience consulting firm in the nation. He blogs on Customer experience trends and best practices. Learn more about The DiJulius Group or The Secret Service Summit, America’s #1 Customer Service Conference.



What would you do: A vision statement saved a company
December 12, 2012, 9:16 am
Filed under: Customer Experience, Customer Service, Verne Harnish

What would you do? Pretend you are the manager of a grocery store the Sunday before Thanksgiving. You have a line of customers with full carts of food, waiting to be checked out. Then your registers go down and wonโ€™t come back on! How would you handle it?

 

โ€œDue to your inconvenience, all your groceries are freeโ€  – Well, this really happened at one of the Harris Teeter stores, where employees could not process any customer transactions.  At first Harris Teeter employees served samples of turkey and ham subs, pimento cheese crackers and sushi rolls to the customers who were waiting in the long lines.  Ultimately, store officials told customers that their groceries would be free because of the long wait.

 

A companyโ€™s credo is more than a slogan – I am in the process of reading the book, The Greatest Business Decisions of All Time, by Verne Harnish and the editors of Fortune.  I came across a great example from 1982 when Tylenol was in one of the worst corporate crises possible. It was their vision statement that guided them through the ordeal. Someone had put lethal doses of potassium cyanide into Extra Strength Tylenol capsules sold in retail stores. Seven people in the suburbs of Chicago died.  Tylenol was doomed — or so it appeared. How Johnson & Johnson saved Tylenol is a story thatโ€™s widely regarded as the gold standard of crisis management.  Then CEO, James E. Burke, applied the companyโ€™s credo to all situations.  This credo went against the advice of their senior executives, shareholders, and the FBI. In the end, TTylenol went from being the market leader (over 30%) to 7% after the disaster, back up to 30% all within 12 months because of the way they handled it. My friend Verne allowed me to share with you the chapter “The Shareholder Comes Last.” It outlines the entire saga, and that chapter (as well as the entire book) is a must read.

 

 The Maids International (TMI) – TMI is a professional home cleaning service with locations all over the US.  They are a consulting client of The DiJulius Group and are dedicated to revolutionizing the home cleaning experience.  This past year they have made a lot of progress building a world-class customer service organization.  One of the first things we helped them with was the creation of their Service Vision Statement & Pillars (see below), which was created by the Franchisee Advisory Committee (FAC). Everyone left there excited about what they had created, but also understanding that the success of their rollout was dependent on every employee in the company seeing the importance of their role in making the service vision come to life with every customer.

 

Walking the Talk – A few months after we launched the SV company-wide, we had another workshop with the FAC. As we were talking about how well the front-line employees had bought into the service vision, one of the top franchisees, Wesley Dunn, franchisee in Durham, NC, shared a great story. Wes talked about how he went to a customerโ€™s house to price a weekly cleaning and found an elderly woman who lived by herself in a small home that has a steep driveway.  While he was there, he noticed that she had an empty garbage can sitting at the end of her driveway.  So Wes brought it up to the garage for her, a simple act of kindness.  Wes went on to explain that as a result of this, every Wednesday night on his way home from work, he stops at this womanโ€™s home to take out her one garbage can and every Thursday night on his way home, he stops to bring it back up to the garage.  It certainly isnโ€™t about the money: her cleaning service is one of the smallest contracts they have. You can tell Wes was extremely proud to share this story. I asked him if thinks he would have done this same type of thing a year ago, before the Maids rolled out the Service Vision. He replied, โ€œI would like to think so, but I donโ€™t know for sure. What I do know is that I realized if I wanted my employees to behave like this, I needed to. It starts with me.โ€

 

 

Johnism

 

A problem is an opportunity to be a hero 

John R. DiJulius III best-selling author, consultant, and keynote speaker, is the President of The DiJulius Group, the leading customer experience consulting firm in the nation. He blogs on customer experience trends and best practices. Learn more about The DiJulius Group or The Secret Service Summit, America’s #1 Customer Service Conference.

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