Outstanding Service begins with Superior Training

outstanding serviceOn a trip to San Francisco I stayed at a new hotel, the Intercontinental San Francisco. Other than its physical newness, you wouldn’t know it.

I travel for business and pleasure, an average of at least once a month, and have experienced a multitude of conference, resort and business hotels from Anchorage to Miami. There isn’t much I haven’t seen, good, bad, excellent or indifferent. The Intercontinental San Francisco is exceptional in its training of employees.

When I first arrived, the doorman greeted me with “Where are you traveling from?”“Las Vegas!,” I responded. “Oh, I’m driving there, tonight, after my shift, for a quick trip. Enjoy your stay in San Francisco,” he responded with a smile.

Moving into the lobby, I observed a row of glowing front desk staff. Competent, professional, and glowing smiles. Checked in!

The bellman arrived at the room, moments after I did. He continued the string of good impressions with competence, good information, and a warm smile.

A few minutes later, the smoke alarm started chirping at approximately 30-second intervals. I called for assistance and a representative from engineering came to replace the battery. He was there quickly, fixed the problem, and engaged in friendly conversation. Minutes after he left the room, I received a call from the hotel service desk to make certain the problem had been addressed and fixed, and to make sure I called if there were any further issue.

I called for a meal from room service. It was promised in 25-30 minutes and arrived in 20. The check showed a delivery charge and gratuity calculated into the total charge. The important part was the room service attendant pointed it out, so I (or any other guest) would not inadvertently double-tip, by mistake. Did I mention the smile and the speed. I had two more room service deliveries during my stay. Each time, the same attention to detail.

Going out that evening, and every time I went to valet, the attendant addressed me by name, asked if I would be checking out or returning, and if I needed any directions.

The restaurant servers were equally superb. As they serviced the table to refresh coffee or tea, or fill the water glass, they subtly picked up sugar wrappers or swept up crumbs. It was Disneyland groundskeeping on a table top. The food was excellent. The presentation was creative. The service, though, was something rare.

One could tell that all the employees had tailored uniforms. Nothing had an off-the-rack appearance.

I will tell these stories about the Intercontinental San Francisco, again and again.

My question is: Are people telling this type of story about our company?
People shouldn’t be doing business with your company, solely because they have become attached to one employee or have a long-term relationship with you. Hopefully, they’re impressed with the totality of your company, and impression every employee offers.

This kind of excellence begins and ends with training….. and, sometimes, re-training. To the degree your company makes a lasting impression, you gain and keep an edge over the competition.

There is no greater asset during lean times… or any time.

Andy Ebon - wedding marketing expert

Andy Ebon
Wedding Marketing Expert
The Wedding Marketing Blog

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