Language underlies all other components in creating powerful guest services experiences. Yeah, words are that important.
- Your efforts to have everything "just so" won't be experienced as perfect unless you also use the right language in engaging your guests
- Even the most well-intentioned and well-trained team members can alienate guests if they use the wrong language
- When things don't go like they were planned, the right words can be your best ally
- Establish a Consistent Style of Speech - identify and implement an appropriate style of speaking throughout your organization
- Create a Lexicon of Preferred Language and Phrasing - study the language that works best with your guests, and identify harmful phrases that should be avoided
- Choose Language to Put Guests at Ease, Not Confuse Them - make it your mission to avoid and condescending or coercive language
- Concentrate your Language Efforts on the Key Guest Moments - focus your language efforts on moments that are known to remain vivid in memory: hellos (make yours unusually warm and personal) and good-byes (make them wonderful)
- Sometimes No Words are Best - align your team to the value of listening
- Words Have Their Limits - remember that verbal and physical cues speak louder than words
- Show, Don't Tell (and Don't Ever Just Point) - don't give guests verbal directions; physically lead them where they need to go
- Phone and Web Language and Communication Pointers - go out of your way to be as human, friendly, and personal as you can
They are the first impressions, and those are the impressions they tell others about.
It bears repeating:
Every. Word. Counts.