Tuesday, August 18, 2009

When I am spending money I am NOT a Guest

I'm sure there are more than a few of us out there who think political correctness and "leading language" are out of control. I get irked about being called a GUEST when I am out spending my money. The term GUEST would "lead" one to believe that everything is FREE and as a GUEST you need to be appreciative of the fact that you are where you are, enjoying whatever it is you're enjoying.
When I have GUESTS in my home I never charge them. I go out of my way to insure that I have everything conceivable that they might need or desire. In reciprocation my Guests behave in a manner the indicates they appreciate everything I'm doing for them. Some of them send Thanks You gifts or invite me to their homes.
Compare that to being in a store, in a hotel, or at some other venue where I'm spending my hard earned cash.
I don't want the experience to be a leisurely, "guest like" experience. I want it to be a friendly, but generally a fast, business type experience. I want the people at the business I am working with to be knowledgeable and efficient. The idea of building me into a loyal "guest" by calling me one is far from effective. If you want me to be a loyal customer - and spend my money with you - quit calling me a guest and go back to calling me a customer. Get your employees to treat me like a customer instead of encouraging them to treat me like a "guest." Take a lesson from the folks at Les Schwab where customer service is king. Anytime I need something that Les Schwab can take care of for me, that's where I go. They are fast, friendly, efficient, knowledgeable and I am perceived to be a customer when I'm there. I like that.
If you're starting a new business, don't get hung up in the PC - Leading Word world. Call me what I am, a customer, and then treat me that way - I'll be back.
One last thing to ponder, I've heard people say on more than one occasion, "Customer Service isn't what it used to be". Maybe that's because so many stores/businesses are now calling it Guest Service.
What are your thoughts?

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