At Your Service: Above and beyond
By Russ Dantu
I am in the middle of writing a book on customer service (hoping to have this available before the end of 2017) and one of the chapters I am writing is called “Above and Beyond.” It’s strictly about companies that go above and beyond to make their customers extra happy when opportunities arise.
By Russ Dantu
This is what makes the difference between good companies and great companies, in my humble opinion. It’s why you and I as consumers become raving fans and always promote that company when we hear someone saying they need a specific product or service that it sells.
In the story below, this company didn’t have to do what it did and no one would have thought any worse about it if it hadn’t, but by going above and beyond it made a huge impact on its customers. An impact that will pay dividends for years to come.
The story is from Canwest Productions. It is the producer of many consumer shows such as the Woman’s Show, the Tattoo and Arts Festival, The Wedding Fair, and several others in multiple cities (check them out at canwestproductions.com/CWP-Our-Shows). Canwest has been a customer of mine for several years and I have known its shows for many more as I spent a lot of years in the trade show industry. I actually was emceeing their main stage at the show where this story took place and its actions were so heartwarming to see. The story below is from one of the owners, Terra Connors.
The Woman’s Show has had a long history in Calgary, in fact we have been around for 35 years. Over that time we have been fortunate to have many loyal attendees, coming back year after year, and many we greet by name with a friendly hug and quick chat. Last fall, one of our attendees, Anne, – a very spry senior – came to the show on her own to visit her favourite Young and the Restless star, Peter Bergman. Unfortunately, while walking though the show, Anne tripped and fell on the concrete floor resulting in a nasty gash on her chin. She refused to go anywhere for treatment for fear of missing Peter on our main stage.
Thinking quickly, a member of our staff ran over to our EMS booth and asked one of the paramedics to come visit Anne at the main stage while another one of us grabbed her some water and a chair to compose herself. After some quick patchwork, the paramedic insisted Anne visit the hospital as a precautionary measure. But again Anne refused to leave, so we sat with her and chatted with her, passing the time for over an hour while waiting for Peter to arrive. Once Peter did arrive, we asked him to make a special exception and meet with Anne personally, to sit and chat with her before his appearance and to give her his autograph and take a picture. Thrilled, Anne immediately removed her bandage and asked us to help spruce her up!
Then we were finally able to convince Anne to visit the urgent care centre, and were able to secure her a ride via EMS, who also made a special trip to take her home. After the show, we made sure to print Anne’s picture with Peter and sent it with a handwritten card, wishing her a speedy recovery and telling her how much we appreciate her loyalty, as she is a part of our Woman’s Show family.
Considering there are tens of thousands of visitors to this particular show, taking this extra care of a hurt senior to make her dream come true really does show them going above and beyond. Did they have to? No, they had to make sure she was safe and taken to the hospital to be checked out. It’s this kind of forward thinking that takes a company from good to great in the eyes of their customers. Peter Bergman even made a special mention of Anne when I was interviewing him on the main stage shortly after his visit with her, which had her and the whole audience glowing from ear to ear.
What stories do you have about going above and beyond for your customers?
Are you standing out from your competitors because you do more for your customers?
Will you empower your staff to go above and beyond when there is an opportunity?
If you have a great story to share that I can use in my upcoming book or a future newsletter, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Take care of yourselves…and your customers!
Russ Dantu is a customer service consultant based in Calgary, Alta. russdantu.com