Now that COVID is beginning to loosen its grip, most of us are venturing “out” a bit more. I’m finding that most service driven businesses are welcoming their customers with open arms.
”Nice to see you, Thanks for coming in, how was your meal? Did you find what you were looking for?” These greetings are always extended with a smile to make the customer know the words were sincere and genuine. It is good to see many of the employees are still in place. When asked, many employers stated they did not lay off their employees, choosing instead to keep them on the payroll and remain open. The employees were kept possibly at a reduced hours and/or salary, but the owner was attempting to insure minimal turnover.
On the other hand, some businesses have chosen to close after opening for a few weeks. Reasons vary, but some businesses were unable to staff after letting their employees go at the onset of COVID. Others were unable to attract customers to a necessary level. Either way, it begs the questions, “Why?”
Most of us did not expect the pandemic to last this long, but it has, and businesses have had to adjust their past practices and business plans. However, good customer service and caring for employees never goes away with great leaders. Employees take on the characteristics of their leaders, good times and bad. When I query employees about the last two years their responses vary, but all have a smile and are happy to serve. As always, generous gratuities are always welcome, but even more so now.
Be positive when all customers enter your establishment. Let them know how genuinely pleased you are to have them walk in. Pay attention to how they are being serviced and ask them when they leave if they are pleased. Many companies offer the opportunity for the customer to respond to a survey – brief – informal or more structured. Feedback leads to improvement.
SCORE counselors are prepared to help you through these difficult times. Do not be afraid to ask. Call the Petoskey Chamber at (231) 347-4150 and ask for an appointment