Volume 2 No.5

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Customer Satisfaction
By: Heng Sopheap (National Intitute of Management) . Picture by : Sem Vannjohn. ( May, 2002 Volume 2 No.5 )

Customer Satisfaction

Customer Satisfaction is the fulfillment of a guest's wants and needs. Hotel guests expect security and a clean, comfortable room to sleep in. Restaurant patrons anticipate a tasty meal, a pleasant atmosphere and high standards of hygiene. Meeting these expectations is the hospitality professional's priority. The job is done only when the customer is satisfied. Although quality service is contextually defined by guests' expectations, some approaches to service apply almost universally. WHO IS KNUTSON? SOURCE THE BOOK. Knutson proposes 10 principles for satisfying and keeping customers satisfied:
1. Recognize your guest. Personalizing interactions but using the guest's name is not always possible, but sincerity and warmth in the interaction goes a long way.
2. Make a positive first impression. Guests judge your advertising claims against beliefs they already hold and accept only new information that matches those beliefs. Changing a negative first impression is challenging, if not impossible.
3. Fulfill your guest's expectations. Guests expect a trouble-free environment. All they want is to have their needs met without aggravation.
4. Reduce efforts required to be exerted by customer. Guests want to exert as little effort as possible in purchasing your service. Remember, they are there to relax.
5. Facilitate customer decision-making. The guest may not be familiar with all you have to offer. Guest decisions can be facilitated in subtle ways, such as carrying a flambéed dessert from the kitchen and attracting the attention of other diners.
6. Focus on the customer's perception. Whether the guest's perception is an accurate one, for her or him it is reality.
7. Avoid violating the customer's unspoken time limits. Time spent waiting always seems four times longer than it really is.
8. Create memories the customer will want to recapture. Good times and memories of good times sell an establishment. When customers visit, all they take with them are the memories… and they are the good memories that keep them coming back.
9. Expect your customer to remember bad experiences. Also expect your customer to tell about those bad experiences, embellishing with each retelling. The result can be an unfavorable impression on people who haven't yet patronized your establishment.
10. Put the customer in your debt. Your goal is to have your guest leave your establishment feeling as though they have received such good value for money that they owe you another visit.