City Light customer account operators, 1945

Girlfriends teach us all kinds of lessons – from fashion to pop culture, food to health, even psychology and business. Our girlfriends are ‘celebrities’ in our lives, right? Special people whose opinions we care deeply about. The following guest blog takes lesson learned from the wonderful women we call our friends and applies them to customer service. Girlfriends and customers … shouldn’t we make them feel like celebrities too?!

GUEST BLOG – by Donna Cutting

The Celebrity Experience, by Donna CuttingProvide a Place to Belong – Through the various loves in our lives – most women have one constant – their girlfriends! When we get together with the girls, we belong! When we’re with them, we’ve got a place to laugh, cry, and discuss a variety of topics – both the weighty (politics, the economy, global warming), and the not-so-weighty (OMG – are those the cutest shoes, or what?) Women have a way of making others welcome and included.

People who provide exceptional customer service do this as well. They create a place where the customer wants to come because they feel like part of the group. They learn the names of their regular customers, they remember details of the last conversation and ask about them later, they provide treats for the kids and the dog, and they let you know their glad you came. You like doing business with them because they make you feel as though you belong!

Be There – When the world comes crashing in, who rallies around? Your girlfriends, of course! They surround you with love, hugs, food, ears that listen, advice, and they stick with you until the world is right again.

Great customer service providers also stick! When you come to them with a problem or a question, they don’t disappear or pawn you off on someone else. They own your problem and do what they need to in order to follow up and ensure that your problem has been resolved or your question has been answered.

Do the Unexpected – Girlfriends never need to be reminded to celebrate! They’re the ones who will remind hubby about your birthday and/or anniversary, and they can tell him exactly what to get you. Your girlfriends are the people who show up with wine for your dinner party, who buy an extra pair of earrings to share with you, and who send you flowers just because.  They know how to surprise and delight!

Red-carpet buy phentermine blue white capsules online service providers know how to do this too! I love the story a woman told me about finding a clothing store she really liked. She liked it so much that she wrote to the CEO of the clothing company to tell him. Two weeks later she arrived home to find a box at her doorstep. It was filled with outfits in her size from that very store, and a note from the CEO that read: “So glad you found us! Enjoy these outfits with our compliments, and come back to shop with us again soon.” WOW! Do you think she shops there? You bet she does. And….she tells everyone who will listen, because….and listen up business owners…girlfriends TALK!

Be Trustworthy – A woman knows that her real girlfriends are the go-to-people when she has a question or dilemma, because she can trust them to tell her the truth. She knows that her girlfriends will tell her when the polka dot top, plaid shorts, fuchsia vest, and strappy sandals that looked so good on Sara Jessica Parker are a fashion don’t when she’s wearing them. She also knows that her innermost secrets, once spilled to a girlfriend, are “in the vault.”

Celebrity service providers are trustworthy. They don’t tell you what you want to hear – they tell you what you need to hear, and let you make an informed decision, whether they make the sale or not. You can feel comfortable that they are not leading you down a dangerous path, and you know that your information – financial, etc. – is safe with them.

HAVE FUN! Who can you count on for a good laugh? Your girlfriends, of course! A trip to the most mundane place can be an adventure when you have a girlfriend along.

Great customer experiences are fun! When the service provider is having good, clean fun, chances are their customers will too. Create an adventure worth talking about for your customers…and they probably will.

©2008 Donna Cutting

Shouldn’t we treat our girlfriends like customers or celebrities? Try it then report back!

Donna Cutting is the author of “The Celebrity Experience: Insider Secrets to Delivering Red-Carpet Customer Service” (Wiley, 2008) and a full time keynote speaker on the topics of employee engagement and customer experience.This guest post was part of a blog tour done by Key Business Partners.

Image by Seattle Municipal Archives via Flickr

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