Last week I had the opportunity to travel to Hood River, Oregon for a brief weekend vacation of kitesurfing (which is an awesome sport if you need a new hobby). I was on vacation but not on vacation from noticing customer service.
If you ask a business if they have good customer service, 100% of them will answer, “YES! Of course we do.” The truth is probably only 80% of them actually offer good customer service and another 5% offer exceptional customer service. Offering good and exceptional customer service is so easy in theory yet so hard in reality. I think that is why so few companies can WOW a customer. Here is a story of exceptional customer service and poor customer service.
Exceptional Customer Service Story
Big Winds, Hood River, OR
A week ago today, I walked in Big Winds with the idea of buying a pump and a harness for my girlfriend. As soon as we entered the shop, we were greeted by the staff to see if we needed any help. We didn’t take them up on the help at first. After some searching around, we began to small talk with the staff, discussing kites, kite surfing, etc…They answered all our questions, helped us look at gear. They never pushed us to buy anything. They were building a relationship and showing us that they cared, which is half the battle. By the end of our shopping, I had bought a new kite, harness, pump, and extension lines. They packaged it together to give us an extra discount.
Showing the customer you care is key. We will be back and will definitely recommend Big Winds to our friends and colleagues!
Andrew’s Pizza, Hood River, OR
This one is tough to write for a few reasons; 1) I love Andrews Pizza and 2) I was one of their first customers when they opened in 1991 and 3) they bring back lots of great memories.
The Situation: After a great Sunday on vacation, my girlfriend and I decided to order pizza and have it delivered. I didn’t even have to think twice about which pizza place I was going to order from – ANDREWS!
I called up Andrews and ordered one medium pizza; they were polite, not over polite, but polite enough and said it would be 45 minutes. Perfect! An hour and a half went by and no pizza, so I called Andrews, not to complain but to see what the status was. They said “it is on its way” with no more help, no time frame, and no “I’m sorry.” Here is the number one rule in business, don’t over promise and under deliver, and if you mess up, confess and say you are sorry. Our pizza arrived about 10 minutes later, cold, late and with bad service. The delivery person said sorry but didn’t offer a discount or a way to fix the situation.
The next day I decided that I still wanted some more pizza, so instead of asking for delivery, I went in to pick up a few slices. I drove the 2 minutes, yep we were staying only 6 blocks from Andrews, and went in to grab the pizza. The team members were not welcoming, they were rude, did not appreciate my business and acted like I didn’t matter to them.
What happened to Andrews’s pizza? Their pizza is so good, yet their customer service is to be desired. And if they made a mistake, a simple $5 off, a free pizza coupon or really showing they were sorry would have fixed all the issues.
Sad story. They are close to losing a loving customer