Bill Hogg

Are You Flexible Enough to Respond to Customer Desires?

Stopped by our local East Side Mario's for dinner the other night. It was a nice night and since it was mid-week the restaurant wasn't too busy, so we decided to sit on the patio. However, when we asked the hostess to be seated...

Audi Thinks Short Term Versus Long Term and Loses Customer

Last week, Audi Canada lost a customer. The customer currently has a 2009 A3 and 2007 A4 in their garage and was considering a Q5 for their next new vehicle. They also lost the brother-in-law of that customer who drives a Q7. Plus there is…

10 Tips To Create More Powerful Employee Engagement – Part 2

In May we discussed the first 5 of 10 tips to create more powerful employee engagement. We are continuing this article with the next 5 tips. Clarify what's expected of employeesIt's essential that your team members know what's expected of them. When they start, generally...

Make Giving Feedback Easy

Recently I had the occasion to visit my local Best Buy. While I was there for one purpose I decided to have a look at some of the new tablets. A very helpful young man came and provided me with excellent information about the...

Hypothesis vs. Directives

In the past I have written about the importance of guidelines versus rules when empowering employees. The same philosophy can be applied to leaders when they interact and provide direction to their team. As a leader it is your responsibility to set the direction for...

4 Steps to GIVE Exceptional Customer Service

In our last article we covered the reasons why employees need guidelines, not just rules. This article shares some specific guidelines on how to engage with customers. When customers are positively engaged, they're more likely to be satisfied. Satisfaction can become loyalty and this...

Don’t Make Promises You Cannot Deliver

I was recently alerted to this communications from Zappos Canada. As many of you know, Zappos is often referred to as a gold standard in customer experience and this is one of the reasons why. Hey, everyone. While we often have fun things to talk...

Do Your Staff Recognize the Long Term Value of a Customer

Customers expect a certain level of service at all times and are naturally happy when they receive it and can easily become disgruntled when they don't. Take the example of a customer returning to their local hardware store because a doorbell they had purchased had...

Choose Your Words Carefully

Words are very powerful — whether written or verbal — and can leave a lasting impression in a customer's mind. So it's essential that words are carefully chosen because once used, they can't be taken back and the effects can either be positive or...

Are You Asking The Right Questions?

Just returned from a trip down to sunny Florida. The temperatures were glorious and we had the opportunity to sit in the sun — which was a fantastic break from the cold weather we have been having here in Canada (it was snowing in...

There’s No Blame Here

I had dinner with a friend recently. It had been some time since we got together — so he shared a recent tale of poor customer service. It seems I attract these type of stories I don't recall all the specifics of the situation...

Is Efficiency Undermining Customer Service?

Maybe because the weather is miserable here in Canada, but I have reflecting on my travels in sunny Europe last summer. Whether in Italy, Greece or Turkey, I was struck by the fact that not once did a server in a restaurant bring the bill...

Whose problem is it?

Last summer my wife, daughter and I went on a cruise. Overall we had a fantastic experience, but one story is still stuck in my mind 6 months later. Weeks prior to departure, we booked our seating for the main dining room. We chose the...

Consistency is Key To Great Customer Service

Recently a reader shared an experience with their Internet Service Provider (ISP) when they changed their internet plan to facilitate a faster download speed with a new high speed plan. Based on the changes discussed, the CSR advised that the cost would remain the same...

Strong Service Recovery Needs to Be Timely

A colleague shared a story with me about a poor customer experience they had in a restaurant. A group of co-workers had arranged to get together for lunch to celebrate a colleague's birthday. They chose a restaurant that they hadn't been to before but...

Keeping the Front-line Informed is Essential to Successful Service Recovery

Have you ever received information from a company that was wrong? How did it make you feel about their product of service? A reader shared an experience after having trouble with the PVR (Personal Video Recorder) for their TV. The problem was that recorded programs…

A Bad Policy Sets Stage For An Off-Brand Experience

Recently my wife and her girlfriend spent 2 days a very popular spa St. Anne's Country Inn and Spa. It primarily caters to women, although men and couples are also welcome. This has been a yearly ritual for these 2 ladies — a chance...

I Have Missed You

Some readers have noticed that it has been quiet on my blog for the last few months and wondered if I was sick. I appreciate the questions — thankfully my health was fine. The truth is I took most of July off and spent the...

Lack of Transparancy Impacts both Customers and Employees

Recently I upgraded my cell phone. It seemed like a simple enough process — until it was time to have the phone delivered. After a positive telephone experience with the representative who placed the order, I was told the new phone would be delivered usually...

Are Your Policies Customer-Focused or Profit-Focused?

Last week I tried to get a replacement part for my stationary bike. One of the end caps from the handle bars had cracked and needed to be replaced. First, I called the local store. They didn’t have any and instructed me to call their...

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