Warning: The words you use to communicate with your customer can destroy the customer service experience.
On a recent business trip to San Diego, I was checking into a hotel. The girl working the front desk seemed very nice. She had to inform me that my room was not ready. She pleasantly offered to put me into a different room, however the words she used ruined the customer service experience.
She said, “I’m sorry the room we pre-assigned you is not ready, but we could downgrade you to a different room and get you in right away.”
The word “downgrade” grabbed my attention, so I asked her what “downgrade” meant. Apparently, they had me in a corner room with a king size bed. Those rooms are just a bit bigger (not much) than the other rooms. She was downgrading me to a “non-corner” room with a king-size bed.
All of the rooms in this hotel are very nice. What she could have said was, “I’m sorry the room we pre-assigned you is not ready. It was a corner room with a king size bed. You can wait until it is ready, or we can put you into another room with a king-size bed. It’s also a very nice room.”
By the way, I took the “downgraded” room, and it was perfectly fine.
What words are you using words that could destroy the customer service experience?
Shep Hyken is a customer service expert, professional speaker and New York Times bestselling business author. For information contact (314) 692-2200 or http://www.hyken.com/. For information on The Customer Focus™customer service training programs go to http://www.thecustomerfocus.com/. Follow on Twitter: @Hyken
(Copyright ©MMXII, Shep Hyken)