Lessons learned while at the Masters

The most coveted ticket (or shall I say badge) in sports this month was the Masters in Augusta. At face value some may think that’s because so many people love golf — after attending this week I have a slightly different view point — it is the experience that people crave.

From arrival in this sleepy little town, hours away from any major metro area, to departure you can feel the difference. To a one the town opens its arms, hearts, and commercial model to attract and retain patrons (there are no customers here, that would cheapen the experience) to the greatest event in sports (their view and now frankly mine)

So what’s so special? Sure, there is great golf and a once in a lifetime chance to see your fave golfer in action but if that was all it was I don’t think it would have the same bucket-list appeal. So here are my top 3 CX moments

1- POPULATION FOR THE WIN. All schools in the area close, meaning local teachers and students join the work pool to ensure patrons have help AND they lessen traffic at the critical opening of the gates. They focus on traffic flow, availability of help, transportation, parking, cleanliness, food — you name it they are working it!

CX question — In enterprise how often do we play this hard using every resource at our hands to win?

2- NO PRICE GOUGING. From Concession stands charging only $2.50 for a sandwich, to free program guides, to affordable souvenirs the experience is there for anyone to enjoy who is in attendance. I’ve been to quite a few venues and I’ve never purchased lunch for two including drinks and dessert for $10.

CX question — How often in enterprise do we upcharge people who already paid a fair price right out the door?

3-CAN I HELP YOU? from entry to exit there is help, not the go find the information center and stand in line kind of help but real help. They’ve thought through what you may need like hats and sunscreen in the sunny grandstands (there is a shop under each stand — no sending you a mile away and missing viewing time) to maps, tee times, and water available for free (no program purchase they hand them out) all to ensure you relax. And if that isn’t enough, they have real people at every turn who are easy to find and ask questions of — real help! Oh and they have survey booths throughout for patrons to leave feedback just in case you have a good idea to help!

CX question — how often do enterprises take the journey of a customer, break it down and really focus on helping customers have a truly great experience? This isn’t overly expensive or even time consuming — it is about having a different perspective.

As I left the Masters yesterday to head home, it was made apparent to me how stark the difference was between the Masters experience and the experience by Hertz.

-From rental car check in (no agent at counter, had to go to garage and get someone to come in — over an hour to rent a car),

- To garbage in car (dirty car, bad experience) and car blocked in garage by stacked up cars on return,

-To absurd up charges to extend a rental one hour to wait for their facility to open near me ($335 charge — resulting in us having to drop a car an hour from home and get a ride home),

- To five calls, 3 tweets and no resolution (supervisor said “well it’s not my fault the place near you doesn’t open until 10am) where each time I contacted someone I was asked to repeat the issue (there are CX tech solutions for that!)

It was a stark reminder that while the Masters may have figured it out and created a truly memorable experience there is still room for other firms to improve!

Here’s to hoping every enterprise improves their CX this year!

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