Five Little Things that Make A BIG Difference in Spa Customer Service

By Gary Henkin President & Founder, WTS International | January 07, 2010

In today's highly competitive hospitality environment, an inviting spa can create a truly memorable guest experience. To that end, there are any number of "small items" that can make a big difference in how your spa is perceived by both a guest and non-guest population. These areas include several basic initiatives with your staff and with the guest that will assist in providing impeccable guest service while energizing the spa.

Celebrating positive initiatives taken by your staff, communicating and sharing information on a consistent basis, empowering your personnel, fostering wellness and paying attention to intuition are just a few of the small but critical items necessary for your staff to produce the kind of guest and customer service ethic that will delineate your spa from others.

Creating a healthy spa culture is vitally important in contributing to a positive experience on the part of the consumer. In order to develop this culture, staff need to be on board and well trained in all aspects of service delivery. Pay attention to the spa items and reap big dividends in your spa operation.

Customer Service - Cornerstone of Excellence in Hospitality

Given the number of customer service seminars, training manuals, scripts and programs that promise to improve customer service in the hospitality industry, it is a formidable task to choose just one that will work for you and your company. Sadly, many of us in the spa industry actually spend more time educating ourselves and implementing programs than the tenure of many of our staff members. Yet, for leaders in one of the most service-intense sectors of the hospitality industry, spa professionals know that customer service levels are as important as standards and expectations for facility operations. When guests visit our spas, they demand, expect and deserve impeccable service and spa treatment prices reflect that. Thus, customer service is the cornerstone of our business.

Guest Feedback - A Starting Point

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Guest Service: A Culture of YES

In a recent global consumers report, 97% of the participants said that customer service is a major factor in their loyalty to a brand, and 76% said they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. And since there is no industry more reliant on customer satisfaction than the hotel industry, managers must be unrelenting in their determination to hire, train and empower the very best people, and to create a culture of exceptional customer service within their organization. Of course, this begins with hiring the right people. There are people who are naturally service-oriented; people who are warm, empathetic, enthusiastic, pleasant, thoughtful and optimistic; people who take pride in their ability to solve problems for the hotel guests they are serving. Then, those same employees must be empowered to solve problems using their own judgment, without having to track down a manager to do it. This is how seamless problem solving and conflict resolution are achieved in guest service. This willingness to empower employees is part of creating a Culture of Yes within an organization.  The goal is to create an environment in which everyone is striving to say “Yes”, rather than figuring out ways to say, “No”. It is essential that this attitude be instilled in all frontline, customer-facing, employees. Finally, in order to ensure that the hotel can generate a consistent level of performance across a wide variety of situations, management must also put in place well-defined systems and standards, and then educate their employees about them. Every employee must be aware of and responsible for every standard that applies in their department. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.