Having spent over 10 years moonlighting in the service industry–a little piece of me dies each time I’m handed just a receipt from a store clerk. Most of the time, I might as well be in a self-checkout lane or working with a vending machine.
How most conversations happen at checkout:
“There you go.”
“$2.18 is your change.”
No wonder robots and self-checkout lanes are taking over.
If that’s all you can bring to the customer experience, you probably don’t deserve a job.
Most employees aren’t happy and openly wear their badge of indifference. It’s depressing to visit some businesses. You leave feeling slightly worse than before just because of employee demeanor.
But there are others who have a mission of making a connection and your day a little brighter. Sometimes they are lone employees with a positive attitude and other times there are companies who instill the right culture.
Zappos is the obvious example. Their mission is to deliver happiness, which means treating you like a real person and not using a script.
In the physical world, Trader Joe’s is phenomenal at providing a good customer experience. It’s a culture thing, since every cashier makes a point to have a human conversation with me. They might comment on what I’m listening to, suggest complimentary items to what I’m buying, or give me feedback on some of the items. They know the customer experience.
If you can’t bring a human element to what you do, expect to be replaced.
We need people who can provide a unique experience and make connections.
You are not just a vending machine.
Connect with me on Twitter: @BenNesvig