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Service compris12/03/2009 - par Mark Tungate
This article comes to you from a hotel room in Vilnius, Lithuania. I can't tell you what Vilnius is like, because I haven't been outside yet. But I can tell you that the Crown Plaza Hotel has great room service.
I always enjoy coming to the Baltic States, because people here are so intelligent and enthusiastic. There's a sense of freshness and curiosity. Nothing is too much trouble for them - which may be why Lithuania's economy has grown so rapidly over the last decade. It's certainly why there's a lightness and lack of stress when you're doing business here.
I've been thinking a lot about how other people's attitudes can make a huge difference to your life, particularly in commercial situations. Last week I was in a very different city, Monte-Carlo, when I met somebody who had worked for Ritz-Carlton Hotels. She told me proudly about the group's famous customer care credo, which she had memorised and still used every day.
Here, in a slightly edited version, are some of the rules Ritz-Carlton staff are told to follow:
1. Building strong relationships creates customers for life. 2. Create mystique for our customers by providing excellent, unique, memorable and personal experiences. 3. Customers are not an interruption, but the purpose of our work.
I love that last one. In fact, I know a few waiters in Paris who could use some Ritz-Carlton training. Right now, some businesses are struggling to keep customers. The solution is simple: perfect service.