Do you invest a lot of time teaching your staff?
Now, do you invest enough time training them on how to communicate effectively with your customers?
With so many things going on at your property and the possibility of turnover, you’re challenged with ensuring that staff appropriately interacts with customers.
We know this is difficult.
If they underperform, it affects every area of your operation, which ultimately affects the whole organization.
To be frank: If your team fails to execute, then the entire property is a failure.
How do you solve this customer service puzzle?
You have workers from all walks of life, with different skill sets and training experiences.
Some are more seasoned than others, others have been exposed to more training and development, and some are brand new.
How do you empower your team to engage with your customers effectively?
We believe we know the answer – we can’t wait to share it with you.
Today’s article is going to provide you with the framework of several useful techniques for communicating with your customers.
You’ll also learn how to deliver exceptional customer experience at the most common touchpoints.
You’ve got tons of information ahead of you. So, let’s not waste any more time.
Are you ready? Let’s go!
EASY-TO-FOLLOW TECHNIQUES FOR EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION
Have high expectations and empower your team to deliver the best customer experience, for every point of contact on your property.
That means before, during, and as they leave.
- Greet sincerely with eye contact
- Acknowledge and understand the customer’s needs
- Proactively engage yourself in helping customers promptly
- Always smile and be positive
- Thank customers every opportunity your team gets
5 OPPORTUNITIES FOR COMMUNICATING WITH CUSTOMERS
It’s time to shine!
We’ve labeled 5 essential touchpoints for customer service.
You can immediately begin to teach your staff how to communicate effectively with your customers using these strategies.
Put these strategies in place today.
Customer Arrival & Parking Lot Operations
- Communicate effectively with customers via your radio partners (g., local radio stations) to deliver traffic routes and patterns, allowing for a more enjoyable commute. Give customers parking lot updates (e.g., when lots are full or whether lot closures take place). We recommend notifying customers when lots are about two-thirds full.
- Use signage in the parking lot to display your text communication information so that your customers can use it when they need it.
- Use your text communication to notify customers of weather updates, traffic patterns, and any critical parking lot of information.
- Deploy alcohol management teams to identify and mitigate potential hazards as a result of intoxicated persons. This also provides assurance to customers that customer service is under control and is dedicated to their experience and safety. 30 minutes prior to opening, move your alcohol management and rapid response teams to entry points. This will allow them to monitor and identify intoxicated persons and mitigate any incidents before they occur.
- Run the math and use your analytics to employ appropriate staffing in order to cut line times to between approximately two and three minutes.
(Pro tip: Benefit of shorter lines: Not only does the increased flow of lines enhance the customer experience but it also mitigates the risk of an active shooter incident. With active shooter incidents on the rise, it’s important to alleviate the possibility of scenarios where large crowds are bottlenecked. The increasing flow of traffic dramatically reduces the opportunity for active shooters to take advantage of large, crowded settings.)
Customer Movement on Property
- Role-play with your staff and put it into place in order to prevent any customer service nightmares.
- Empower staff to acknowledge all customers they make eye contact with. This lets the customer know your team is there for them. It gives them the peace of mind you’re in control and ready to provide them with a safe and secure environment for that memorable experience they came to your property for.
- By doing all of this, you’re demonstrating the fact you hire and train staff that wants to help customers and are there when they need them.
- Mount signage displaying customer code of conduct and text communication information throughout your concourses and every concession point. This makes the customer code of conduct clear to customers – it makes it real.
- No one likes it when they lose something and the time it can take to report a lost item can feel like salt in a wound. Implement lost and found software letting your customers report their lost items directly at your customer service locations. This is an inexpensive way to enhance customer experience and build customer loyalty.
- Signage displayed in the concourses also acts as a deterrent for intoxicated persons. If they’re not in the right state of mind, clear signage might help put them back in line.
- Use your analytics to understand the point of sale metrics to best determine your staffing needs against the customer base for specific areas on the property.
(Pro tip: Customer demographics change according to the size, type, and purpose of your property. So will your staffing needs.)
- All staff needs to be at their post and ready to exceed customer expectations. It’s go time!
- It’s essential to have all staff trained on hotspots and protocols.
- Train staff on how to effectively communicate incidents to the operations center.
- Always mount signage that displays your customer code of conduct and text communication information – make it prominent upon entry into the property.
- Communicate with your customers on a large scale! Deliver light-hearted public service announcements (PSA) at specific times during the day explaining your customer code of conduct and ways to communicate with staff in the event of an incident.
- Prominently display visible static signage throughout the property, inclusive of text communication information. That way, when you’re not on the loudspeaker, everyone always knows you’re still in control and focused on their safety.
- Being able to exceed customer expectations is a crucial ingredient to a successful Implement customer request tracking software to increase staff efficiency and enhance performance. Never overlook a wheelchair request again.
- Re-deploy your rapid response team to the parking lot anywhere from 10 minutes before the end of the day to the end of the day, depending on the activity on your property.
- Re-deploy your police force to the parking lot complete with patrol cars and lights flashing, along with officers on foot. This is a useful deterrent for potential hazards. It also provides assurance to your customers; they will experience a safe and smooth exit from the property.
- Oh, and by the way, let your customers report lost items to the lost and found software through your website if they realize they lost something after arriving home.
- The party’s over, but that doesn’t mean customer service stops! Your staff should be waving goodbye and thanking your customers for coming to your property.
- Use variable message (VM) boards with thank you messages to supplement your staff’s sendoff.
- Depending on the location of your property, re-route traffic patterns for an easy exit too. It’s one more shot to exceed expectations.
OVER TO YOU
Finish your customer service efforts by leaving a smile on everyone’s face. Do this, and your customers will always come back for a great experience!
Always hold your staff accountable to achieve all eight ways to win the day and to communicate effectively with customers.
Measure their performance and ensure they deliver service with professionalism, enthusiasm, and the friendliness you require for a memorable experience.
So, is your team ready to communicate effectively with your customers?
Editor's note: This post was originally published in October 2017 and has been updated for comprehensiveness and freshness.