Customers like doing business with employees who are customer focused and not just passionate, but also give their service some “Comfort Appeal”. “Comfort appeal” from an employee helps create a customer experience that is so uniquely reassuring that customers are captivated. It becomes an experience that shines with infectious comfort that invites a reciprocal comfort response back from your customers. Allie, is one example of delivering “comfort appeal”.
Allie, is a Office Depot sales clerk in the printing department. To customers, Allie never appears rushed, flustered or overwhelmed while dealing with customers. Often the counter at the printing department becomes packed with numerous customers waiting for their printing to be completed, picking up products, making purchases or asking questions regarding new printing projects.
Allie is always the calming factor during such hectic times. She is friendly, patient, helpful and will give you the personal attention you are looking for – all while having enough sense of urgency to make you feel she is concerned about helping as many people as possible. I have often seen other sales clerks become frustrated, short tempered and even a little snippy while trying to manage customers in a busy line. Have you ever heard someone say; “I’ll be right with you. I’m working as fast as I can.” That certainly doesn’t sound like an employee who is patient, calm and appearing under control to help serve their customers.
Whether she is answering the phone or multitasking at the counter, Allie never appears rushed. Watching Alley perform is like watching ducks swimming in a pond–underwater you see their feet frantically paddling away, yet on top you only see a duck gracefully gliding along the water. Allie’s smile and “comfort appeal” keeps everything in order while taking care of her customers. The amazing thing I notice is that customers don’t seem to mind waiting. Allie’s “comfort appeal” becomes contagious. Allie reassures her customers that she is doing her best to keep everything under control to give the customer the personal attention they want to complete their printing projects correctly.
What does your customer experience look like during busy times in your business? How do you or your employees deal with lines at the counter, busy meal periods, or other hectic times? Are staff short-tempered and displaying their frustrations towards customers? Are you providing a good experience to your customers? One way to find out is to see it for yourself.
Here are a few tips:
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1. Determine when your busiest times are and stand at a distance to observe the customer experience.
2. Evaluate the facial expressions of your staff and customers to see how they are dealing with the busy situation.
3. Prepare your team ahead of time for busy time periods and develop a game plan for handling customers. Make sure everyone is aware and knows the expectations.
4. Be grateful that you are busy
In any hectic or emergency situation the proper protocol is to remain calm to comfort the unfortunate victim. The same can be said for delivering a great customer experience, particularly during hectic times. Having and displaying “comfort appeal” during the these busy times will have a positive and contagious effect on your customers as well as your staff. Allie’s example is just one way to make sure the customer experience in your business is always magical! Good Luck!
Always Wishing You Magical Success!