Recently, I stayed at the Westin Colonnade Coral Gables along with my co-workers, Angi Calkins and Sadie Zobel. When we arrived at the hotel, there was a problem with our reservations. While our reservations were in the Starwood computer, they were not in the Westin system and the hotel was fully booked for the night.
If you think that this situation is heading for disaster with me ranting on and on (like I did several years ago when my Hilton Honor points magically disappeared) and declaring a boycott of Starwood properties, then you are absolutely wrong!
Here is how the Westin turned the situation around and made me a happy customer:
The 1st thing was that the front desk personnel promptly said “Mr. Diamond, I know we can’t find your reservations and the hotel is booked, but we guarantee you’ll all have rooms for tonight. So why don’t you relax in the lobby while we fix the situation. And while you and your friends are waiting, beverages are on us.”
Situation resolved and life goes on…but wait there’s more…
While I was roaming around waiting for the room glitch to be resolved, I noticed a placard in the lobby inviting all guests to a 6:45 AM refreshing morning exercise walk hosted by the hotel General Manager, Michael McMahon. So the next morning, I joined Michael for a 45 minute jaunt and discussed the hotel business, Recruitment Process Outsourcing and our customer service philosophies.
What a fabulous thing Michael is doing! Every morning he connects with his customers, finds out what is on their minds, and learns how he can make the Westin Colonnade Coral Gables a better hotel. Starwood and Westin take notice, clone this guy and make the “walk” a replicable GM best practice.
And to my RPO service provider friends, here my recommendation:
Take a walk with your customers, ask questions and spend time listening. You’ll learn a lot and the exercise will be good for you too.
Post contributed by Barry Diamond. Follow me on Twitter @bddiamond