Let’s look at what I mean by remarkable customer service. Imagine a food establishment like this: “A free brownie finds its way into a get-well-soon package. An accountant interrupts her regular workflow to go take out the kitchen trash. There are also extraordinary acts of service that surprise even seasoned veterans who thought they’d seen it all. A server volunteers to make things right by delivering a forgotten product to a guest’s home. The cook smiles and happily makes something that’s not on the menu and brings it out to the table personally.”
This quote is frim Ari Weinzweig, co-founder of the Zingerman’s Community of Businesses, and describes the superior customer service that persists from top to bottom in his organizations. It comes from his book “A Lapsed Anarchist’s Approach to The Power of Beliefs in Business.”
Ari and his team have successfully cultivated companies that deliver superior customer service, and that stems from investing highly in their employees.
In all likelihood, you’ve read a lot of articles that talk about positive company cultures, so you most certainly recognize the value. You want employees who are deeply engaged, intrinsically motivated and customer-oriented. But often there is a disconnect between what we say we want our culture to be, and the reality we step into every day.
That is why Ari has begun training other businesses to flourish using the Zingerman’s approach because it does not only apply to the service industry.
Now we ask, what is the association equivalent of putting a brownie into a get-well-soon package and how can we cultivate a company culture that strives for it? Can you imagine the effect on both member and staff retention?