CUSTOMER SERVICE: TRANSACTION OR CONNECTION?
We seldom pay much attention to customer service unless it is very good or very bad. Most transactions seldom go beyond the actual giving and receiving of information and service. This is normal, but occasionally, we encounter excellent or extraordinary service, and it makes a difference in our experience.
Social protocol teaches that every experience has three phases: the beginning or introduction, the middle or actual transaction, and the end, or departure. For superior customer service to occur, all three phases must be harmonious.
The restaurant worker who greets and seats a customer, but does not return to the table to thank the guest or say goodbye after the tab is paid, has merely performed a transaction.
The beginning and end of any transaction must be harmonious. If two individuals shake hands at the beginning of a conversation, they should do the same as they depart.
However, extraordinary service goes beyond performing a proper transaction. It is about making a connection. I studied the methods of a very popular Bay Ridge waitress whenever I visited the restaurant where she worked. Even if she was busy as she seated a table, she took the opportunity to connect when her customers paid the tab.
I observed her time and again ask names of anyone she did not recognize, telling them that she would remember them when they returned. All the while she laughed and made everyone feel that she was delighted to know and serve them. She knew the secret of making connections and not merely performing transactions.
Whether we are teens or adults, in sales or corporate America, we will have better experiences if we try to connect. Direct eye contact followed by a smile is still a sure winner.
BEAUTY TIPS: Beautiful Lips
Our lips are overlooked except for the application of lipstick or lip gloss. However, we can condition and help to restore a conditioned and plump look to lips that have gone south due to aging and collagen loss.
This exercise will help with toning. Make an open pout such as a fish-like look and hold for a count of five. Immediately break into a wide smile as you pull back the lips. Do this combination 10 times. Next use two fingertips to pat your lips from end to end while in the fish-like extension form. Finally, lightly use a baby toothbrush with petroleum jelly on it to brush and condition your lips. Remove the excess jelly before retiring to bed.
Phillipa Morrish is the president of Etiquette Training International.