Thursday, July 21, 2011

Paint The Picture, Build The Expectation

Good Morning Everybody,

Empire State BldgWe had a great first day in NYC. In spite of the heat, a nice breeze made walking the city quite nice.  I hear that back in Cincinnati they have 98 degree weather with high humidity making the heat index at 115 degrees, one of the highest in the country!  I’m kind of glad we're in NYC.

We caught up with my daughter, Elizabeth, for diner last nice and plan to spend some more time with her over the weekend.  I've mentioned previously that she's going to school in the city and working for my good buddies at Animoto too. 

Movie stuffOne the way walking back from dinner last night, we were making our way up Park Avenue and at about 48th Street saw lots of trucks, lights, cameras, people everywhere.  I t seems we had walked onto the filming of the new Tom Hanks/Sandra Bullock movie, Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close [link].  No, we didn't see Tom or Sandra - they had finished their scenes two months ago.  Yesterday evening was the last day for the final scene of the movie- all very interesting to watch.  Hey, you never know what stories will unfold in the Big Apple ;~)

On with Business Day Thursday---

Paint The Picture, Build The Expectation

This post is prompted by our check in experience at our hotel, the Waldorf-Astoria, yesterday.  We travel quite a bit and are reasonably high in the Hilton Honors membership level.  We headed to the Diamond Desk to begin the check in process.  There we met Jackie, I would venture to say the most personable person in the hotel.

Waldorf LobbyWe were immediately disarmed by her charm, wit, and a desire to make our stay it's absolute best.  Here is the lesson today.  What was her secret weapon to making that happen for us?  It was her way of constantly building our expectations for our stay.  I have to tell you, when your staying at one of the nicest places in the city, you already have pretty high expectations anyway.  Jackie wanted to take it over the top.

I was a little worried about what room we would be staying in since the hotel was overbooked by 6%.  I was just hoping that it would be better than a broom closet, although a broom closet at the Waldorf should still be pretty nice.  Jackie assured us that we would simply love the room.  She was familiar with it and it was one of her favorites. It was also the favorite of many of the regular guests.  Jackie had my attention - she was working her magic.

She was telling me not to worry, I would love the room.  Secondly she was affirming that others have loved it too. And thirdly she was putting her seal of approval on it with her own past experience with the room. 

Waldorf guest roomThen she took it to the next level.  She sensed that maybe I was still a bit hesitant about the room.  She paused looked at the computer one more time and revealed that an even larger room would become available Sunday morning.  She could arrange us moving into that room if we desired.  Now she had insured our comfort in the rare instance that the room she was pointing us toward was less than expected - what service!

The room she told us that we would love was must perfect.  With the addition of the refrigerator and microwave, we are set for the week.  Add to that the daily continental breakfasts, bootled water every day, and several "adult beverage" vouchers, we are set for the week! We can't wait!

How Do You Build Expectations In Your Own Business?

Sparklers Shot2441_SchulerW11-Edit-Edit-EditDo you and your staff build expectations for your customers?  I believe its vital to your business success that you do.  I always said, "One of the best ways to run a business is to make promises to your clients about your products and services, then  over-exceed those promises!

Zook-Books-and-PhotoBooksI am always building the expectations for my clients – “You're going to love the album”;  “What a fabulous wedding your planning, I can't wait.”  “Because of your fabulous chosen location the images we're going to get will be amazing”;  “I just wanted to call you and tell you how great the images turned out, you're going to love them”;  "Your album just came back from the bookbinder.  It looks fabulous.  I can't wait for you to see it."

Do you get the idea?  For some it may need to be practiced, but if you truly want to deliver the best for your clients and you do, it's easy to say the words.  Why? Because you ARE keeping your promises and hopefully delivering beyond the clients expectations.


Hey gang, that's it for me today.  We are really going to take the rest of the day off and enjoy the sites and sounds of the city.  I'll see you tomorrow of a short post.

Have a good one and I'll see you then,  David

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