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Paper or Plastic?

Ever noticed the greeting you receive more often than not by the person bagging your groceries at your local supermarket? If your local supermarket is like mine, it probably sounds something like this: “Paper or plastic?”

All too often, appropriate greetings have left the repertoire of most customer-facing employees in the service industry. Appropriate greetings seem to have transformed from gracious messages to welcome customers to robotic questions designed to increase throughput…

Here are some other “greetings” I hear a lot:

“Two for dinner?”

“Checking in?”

“For here or to go?”

As customers, it’s just as easy to lower our expectations of service providers and simply comply with these robotic questions in the same manner. But there’s no magic there. Nothing is happening to engage the customer, to make it memorable, or to build loyalty.

That may be why it’s so refreshing to experience service providers who are less robotic and more unique. These employees get your attention and make an impression by demonstrating authentic enthusiasm for their customers in ways that transform typical bland, ordinary transactions into memorable and unique experiences.

Your thoughts?

Order Delight Your Customers: 7 Simple Ways to Raise Your Customer Service from Ordinary to Extraordinary by Steve Curtin or purchase from select retailers, including Barnes & Noble.
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