Lagniappe – A Customer Service Strategy


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Lagniappe is a great French word often used in Louisiana which is defined as ‘The art of giving a little something extra’. I love the word ‘art’ in the definition because it truly is an art. You are painting a canvas of experience every time a representative of your business comes in contact with a customer in a close encounter. How vivid and memorable are the colors you use to create a lasting picture in their mind will be critical to your sucess.

This is going to be a brief message today because – after all – it is Mardi Gras today and those of us in Louisiana have important business to attend to 🙂
The question is this: What are YOU doing to bring that ‘little something extra’ to the customers of your business in each and every point of contact?

I challenge you to have a Lagniappe meeting with your team in the next 24 hours. Ask each team member what ONE THING they could do that would bring their personal service and customer connection to a new level. Instruct them that this has to be something concrete and very specific. Then ask each of them to suggest at least ONE THING that is out of their personal control that your business could do to provide that ‘little something extra’ to your customers.

My challenge to YOU is to then share with your team a real life story about when one of your associates provided Lagniappe service by going that extra mile for the customer. Tell them how this had significant business impact due to a strengthened business relationship or an improved business transaction.

A ‘Lagniappe’ culture can be instilled, but management must lead the charge. Does your staff see you mentor Lagniappe service, even on a busy day when you have many responsibilities to juggle? Example can be the most powerful teacher. Throw up that bead and someone will be sure to catch it! Happy Mardi Gras — and be sure to let me know when I can bring a little Lagniappe to your business or association!

Republished with author's permission from original post.

Teresa Allen
Teresa Allen is a nationally recognized customer service speaker and customer service author. Allen is owner of Common Sense Solutions, a national training and consulting firm focused on bringing common sense to business and life. Allen is author of Common Sense Service: Close Encounters on the Front Lines and is co-author of The Service Path: Your Roadmap for Building Strong Customer Loyalty.


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