Last month, I enrolled my two oldest boys in lessons at the Breckenridge Ski & Ride School located at Peak 8 in Breckenridge, Colorado.
As it was over spring break, there were hoards of skiers making every line (from the ski lifts to the registration area) longer than usual. It’s situations like these, especially when kids are involved, that test the patience of employees and customers.
I decided to take this opportunity to observe the ski instructors who ran the ski school as well as the parents—many of whom were international travelers whose native language was not English.
Here’s what I noticed:
Efficiency. Although there were perhaps twenty employees total, there was an appearance that there were twenty registration agents, twenty equipment rental employees, and twenty ski instructors. That’s because they were cross-trained and easily redeployed to whatever function needed support.
Helpfulness. There was always someone available to hold a door open for little skiers encumbered by their equipment, help with fastening lift tickets to jackets, attach identification stickers to equipment, apply sun screen, etc. These are examples of the “little things” that leave big impressions on customers.
Assertiveness. Rather than sending me to the back of another line after she realized that I had pre-registered online, the registration counter employee excused herself to slip into an “employees only” area and collect my registration packet for me. Later, I noticed a parent who had arrived late with his child and was a bit uptight. Detecting this, one of the ski instructors assured the father, “We’ll stay with your son outside while you get checked-in.” Meanwhile another employee personally escorted him inside to facilitate the check-in process.
Engagement. The lights were on. People were at home. The ski and ride school employees consistently smiled, made eye contact, and added enthusiasm to their voices. These employees were engaged!
If you plan to have customer service differentiate your business, identify ways to more efficiently serve customers. Notice the “little things” that will leave big impressions and be assertive in providing them. Lastly, be engaged. Demonstrate to customers that there’s no place you’d rather be than right there, right now, serving them.
While the Breckenridge Ski & Ride School promises “mountains of discovery,” it’s clear that its employees also provide mountains of customer service.