training for excellent customer service

Obviously great customer service is a key component to attracting and retaining customers, but what is good customer service and how do you provide it? A focus on well trained staff is a great way to make sure a business can provide excellent customer service and assure return business and new customers.

Really good customer service isn’t just about getting orders right and out on time, or having the best tasting menu, it’s also about how your staff enhance the overall experience for the customer. Your staff are the face of your business, they are the people that customers see and speak to. So it makes sense that if they are well trained, knowledgeable and passionate they can provide both excellent technical service as well as a fantastic customer experience.

Being attentive to a customer’s needs whether it’s altering an order due to dietary requirements, being able to see when customers need service and being prompt in fixing any problems are all pretty straight forward elements to good customer service. These are things that are expected by customers and are the starting point when training staff.

The extras that really enhance a customer’s experience and give them a reason to come back or recommend your business, requires a little more training. Some key things that can enhance a customer’s experience are the staff’s knowledge of food and drink items and their ability to recommend and explain, with some authority, great menu options as well as food and drink matches.

Doing this can be as simple as getting your staff interested in what you serve, it could be the food, the beer and wine, or the coffee. Teach your staff about the items and products you serve, ask their opinion on them and ask them to tell you what they know. If you put a focus on product knowledge for your staff, they in turn can apply their understanding during service to give a tailored feel to each customer’s experience.

Giving customers an experience where they feel like they have been personally taken care of has always been part of hospitality, but this has become even more important as the market becomes increasingly competitive. To be a successful business you have to stand out for a reason, and having well trained, passionate staff is one of the simplest ways to do that.

*image courtesy of http://espressomelbourne.com

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