10 Ways to Step Up Your Customer Service Game
Customer service is central to working in a hotel or restaurant. In the short term, happier guests give bigger tips and might compliment you to your manager. Down the road, an outstanding customer service track record could put you in line for a promotion.
So what can you do to up your customer service game? The answer is: many things! Most strategies you can use to get better at customer service seem small and simple, but together they add up to a great guest experience. Try to put as many of these strategies into action as you can:
Smiling tells guests that you’re glad to see them and happy to help with whatever they need.
2. Look guests in the eye
You may need to look up information on a computer screen when you check someone in or to take notes on a notepad when guests tell you their lunch order, but try to look up as often as possible and make eye contact. This shows guests that you’re giving them your full attention; it also conveys a friendly and welcoming attitude.
3. Introduce yourself
Talking to an employee they’ve never met before can be uncomfortable for guests. Make them feel at ease by introducing yourself with your first name. Introducing yourself also makes it easy for guests to get your attention or ask for your help later.
4. Say, “Thank you”
Guests like to feel appreciated. If a guest makes your job a little easier—for example, by having their reservation and payment information ready for you at check in—thank them.
5. Memorize crucial information
Are there some questions guests ask again and again, like the hours when nearby attractions are open or the times a local bus leaves? Memorize the answers to these frequently asked questions, and guests will be impressed that you can supply information instantly.
6. Follow up
After you respond to a guest’s request or complaint, follow up to check if they’re satisfied. Ask if they need anything else.
7. Say, “How was your stay?” or, “How was your meal?”
Ask guests to tell you about their experience. This shows that you care and makes guests feel that someone is looking out for them. Plus, people may respond with valuable feedback that can help you improve your customer service skills.
8. Don’t take grumpy guests personally
Sometimes, a guest is grumpy no matter what you do. Try to not take this personally, and keep your tone of voice calm and pleasant. Remind yourself that they might just be having a bad day. If you let a cantankerous person influence your mood, that could carry over to your interactions with other guests, so try to put it behind you and move forward with a cheerful attitude.
9. Read back orders for confirmation
If you’re serving food or drinks, repeat the guest’s order to make sure you heard right. This prevents misunderstandings and saves you from having to redo an order.
10. Use the guest’s name
If you know the guest’s name, address them by “Mr.” or “Ms.” and their name. If you’re not sure how to pronounce a name, ask. Using guests’ names shows that you are taking the time to learn who they are and to communicate in a more personalized way.