Readers of my Zebra Report know that I’ve had misfortune to be on the receiving end of poor service a number of times over the years. You may fondly remember my rant about meatballs at Olive Garden, or my rave about the staff at Bothell’s Hilton Garden Inn.
Today I want to tell you about phenomenal client care I experienced from one of my own clients – Dallas Green, a real estate agent who works in Washington’s Tri-Cities of Richland, Kennewick, and Pasco.
For the story to make sense, I need to give you a perspective of a couple of days of my life leading up to the experience.
As you know, some of my work time is spent coaching live with my EVOLVE and ENCORE clients, and some is spent on the road training agents in classes across the country. Teaching requires a lot of physical and emotional energy, and time on the road can be draining. I’m not complaining – I love being out with agents! But there’s no question that it can be exhausting.
On my schedule at the end of March were four ½ day classes – two to be taught in the Seattle area (western Washington, and two in the Tri-Cities (eastern Washington). These were going to be taught back-to-back, so I knew it was going to be a tough couple of days.
Once the announcement of the Tri-Cities class was made I was thrilled to receive an email from Dallas Green, a member of my EVOLVE coaching group. Dallas knew that, while I know some parts of eastern Washington well, I might want a recommendation for someplace to eat while I was in the Tri-Cities. He provided options for a number of restaurants in town, included the addresses and a link to the online menus, and even identified favorite dishes that he thought I might enjoy. It was such a thoughtful gesture – and I was really touched by the fact that he would go to that much trouble.
On March 28th, I was up around 4:00 am to drive the two hours from my home to the Seattle area. That day I taught two interactive classes, with each session having in excess of 100 students. After class we stayed to answer questions, so around 6:00 pm we packed up the car … and began the 220 mile drive to the Tri-Cities.
By the time we arrived at 11:30 that night, we were all pretty tired. Off to bed we went, knowing that the next day we had two more classes to deliver before driving 320+ miles back home that evening.
We had another great day of teaching while in the Tri-Cities, but by the end of that second full day I was ready for a nice meal before heading home. How wonderful do you think it was to be able to pull up Dallas’ email and get a recommendation? Let me tell you – it was a real treat! Based on his recommendation we selected a restaurant, and headed off.
Because Dallas coaches with me, he knows me pretty well – and his #1 recommendation for our dinner that night was spot on. The restaurant, Taverna Tagaris, offered Mediterranean-style food in a beautiful setting.
We plopped ourselves down, sniffed the amazing aromas, and all agreed how nice it was to have a restaurant recommendation from someone local.
But that’s not where the story ends. No sooner had we received our menus than the waitress came over with a bottle of wine … and Dallas Green’s business card. She said, “You must be Denise – Dallas described you perfectly!” And then she handed us Dallas’ card and said the wine was a gift from him for us to enjoy.
Can you imagine how shocked we were? As we looked around for Dallas to thank him, the waitress let us know that he actually wasn’t in the restaurant, but had arranged for the wine in advance of our meal.
How did Dallas know we would end up at Taverna? After all, he had given us several recommendations. I suspect if I were to ask Dallas, I would discover there was a bottle of wine waiting for us at each of the three locations, just in case we selected that particular restaurant. Knowing Dallas, he probably covered all his bases in an effort to provide an extraordinary experience.
What I do know is this: either before or after our class that day, Dallas had driven over to Taverna, arranged for the wine, left his business card, and driven back to the hotel for class. He cared enough about doing something special for us that he went well above and beyond ordinary customer service, and into the realms of extraordinary client care.
For many years now I’ve traveled around teaching classes, often in locations where I have clients … or students I’ve been in front of multiple times. Never has someone gone to this length to do something special for me.
If Dallas Green treats his coach like this, what kind of care do you think he delivers to clients? I suspect it’s extraordinary, just like Dallas himself.
What kind of extraordinary client care have you delivered to clients? Let me know – I always love hearing about someone who has gone above and beyond!