Don’t be an Angry Customer
There will be scenarios that shall really test your patience. And your tolerance. And your comfort zones.
For us, like yesterday.
We were put up at a 5-star hotel which had an unexpected power outage. The transformer gave up and there was no power for a couple of hours in the evening. Partly to blame how our fancy hotels are structurally designed (Duh, the Civil Engineer in me cries in pain!) - one would have a great view to the adjacent golf court but, a near lethal natural ventilation. One can happily die in suffocation if not for the electricity-run air coolers and room temperature controllers. So when the inhabitants of those 230 rooms crowded at a meager 30 member front desk staff at the reception, it was a nasty riot in the night.
Me and my husband came back after a long tiring day, to realize that we would have to spend the next couple of hours in the common lobby fighting for charging sockets. Honestly, things like this happen at their rarest occurrence and they DO take time.
Let me tell you what we did.
Tip 1: Smile
The situation is already serious, and the team has lost all their credibility from the customers at this one odd misshaping. I know how they were slogging to keep our rooms clean and give us fresh food every day. Its good to give them a warm space so that they can handle the crisis. You should just keep in mind that one negative shouldn’t negate all the service they have done to you up until then.
Tip 2: Co-operate
I think it was Nehru who said, “Every little thing counts in a crisis”. It truly does. Every word gives solace, and the nagging of how screwed up the scenario is, doesn’t really help. We went and spoke to the Manager if he has a strategy in plan and really, to nudge him that it is okay if he screwed up one time — it wont happen again.
Tip 3 : Don’t Complain to vent the Anger
Yes, you had a long day. Yes, you want to sleep on time. Yes, you are a premium customer. But, during contingencies, you would probably know that the staff wouldn’t have a chance to either sleep or eat in peace. If you really are worried about the problem, help them solve it. Together.
Tip 4: The Calmest souls shall be rewarded.
Of course, the team has a plan to execute. But your attitude really decides where you stand in that plan. We were surprised to see, a few of us were sent to another hotel for the night as a compensation. We were given an upgrade and a cab ride. Interestingly, we were the first ones to be sent out. Because, your composure helps them to execute perfectly.
Hat-tip: Be ready to be impressed.
This evening, a young lady in her house-keeping staff uniform drops this hand-written card and a salad at our doorstep, thanking us for our patience.
All I did tell her was this. “You guys probably need to party hard tonight, oh wait, I mean, sleep for longer tonight. You deserve it. Thanks a lot!”
I know we live in an age, where services are expected to be prompt and perfect. But a little courtesy and empathy doesn’t kill, yeah?