Good LSM: Accommodating the (Confused) Customer
One of the “must-do’s” while you are in Dublin is to visit the Guinness Storehouse, a.k.a the Guinness brewery and museum. While there, my husband, sister- and brother-in-law and my 16-month-old niece and I signed up to do the “Ultimate Tasting Experience” – a more intimate tour than the general tour during which you to try all the varieties of beer that Guinness has to offer.
We bought our tickets, we checked in and waited for our experience to begin. As our tour guide approached our group, she let us know (regretfully) that the tour is only for guests age 18 and older, and that my niece wouldn’t be able to join us on the tour, so one of us would have to sit out (with the baby) while the tour continued. We explained that we purchased the tickets with the baby in plain site, and checked in with the baby – and hadn’t heard anything about the age policy until that moment.
At this point, the tour guide could have just said, “Well, sorry,” and directed us to customer service to get a refund so that she could continue on with the tour. But, what she did was so much better than that. She excused herself, and grabbed another tour guide who was not leading a tour at the time. She explained the situation to him, introduced him to us, and let us know that he would escort us to customer service, and lead us on a private tour of our own – as an apology for the age limit not being clear to us in the first place. Here are all the things he did right:
- He swiftly navigated us through less crowded corridors to customer service (with a stroller and a baby, this was immensely helpful).
- Explained the situation to the customer service rep at the desk so that the refund process was painless and easy for us.
- Made use of a currently vacant area in the tasting room to lead us through a private and detailed tasting of several beers.
- Never let on for one second that this situation was at all an inconvenience.
We felt truly taken care of and had an incredible time. What’s more is that Guinness didn’t even charge us for this private tasting. Instead of placing the blame on the customer (for not knowing the rules), they placed the “blame” on themselves for not communicating the rules clearly enough. How incredible is that? It would have been easy (and probably more convenient) for them to send the group of confused tourists off to customer service and forget about it. But instead, they treated us like we were loyal, long-time customers.
So, the next time you are considering sending a confused customer away – why not do the exact opposite? See what you can do to make up for their confusion (regardless of whose fault it is) and turn a potentially bad customer service experience into a tremendous one?