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Customer Service Basics

by Andy Deyo

Ice skating facilities are in the business of entertainment. In order to turn one-time customers into lifelong partners, insanely great customer service is necessary. Build your business one smile at the time with the following customer service basics.

Basic # 1 – “Hello Zone”

When a guest is within 10 feet, make positive eye contact and smile. When guests are within five feet, acknowledge them with a proper greeting: “Good morning,” and, if appropriate, ask, “How may I assist you?” Be the first to address them.

Basic # 2 – “Escort Guests”

If a guest asks for directions, do not point. If possible, walk guests to the place they want to go. Remember, we are the AMBASSADORS of our business.

Basic # 3 – “100%”

Anticipate opportunities and resolve them BEFORE they have a chance to occur. If you hear about an opportunity to improve the experience of a guest, you own it. Our goal is 100% guest satisfaction.

Basic # 4 – “Guest Names”

Use guests’ names whenever possible. It sends the message that they are important … and they are! If you don’t know their names, address them as “ma’am” or “sir.”

Basic # 5 – “Telephone Courtesy”

Always answer the telephone by the third ring with a smile on your face, and use your facility’s standard greeting. Always speak in a kind, friendly, clear tone.

Basic # 6 – “Cleanliness”

It’s up to everyone in your organization to pick up debris and discarded materials. All areas of your facility must be kept clean. Uncompromising levels of cleanliness are the responsibility of every team member.

Basic # 7 – “Look Professional”

Always wear an immaculate uniform, where appropriate, or desired business attire when called for. Include any issued pins and the correct name tag. Take pride in your organization.

Basic # 8 – “Verbiage”

Use proper vocabulary with guests. Say “yes” versus “OK,” or “yeah” and “hello/good morning” versus “hi” and certainly versus “sure.”

Basic # 9 – “Have Fun”

Have fun and present a great positive attitude. Remember, we are in the entertainment business. Our guests come to us to relax and enjoy themselves. We need to do our part to help that happen. Place TEAM over individual agendas.

Basic # 10 – “Anticipate Needs”

It is our goal to anticipate our guests’ needs in advance. All team members should think one step ahead so that we may deliver the services our guests have come to expect.

Basic # 11 – “Be Knowledgeable”

All team members should be knowledgeable of facility programs, offerings and information so that we can impart correct information 100% of the time.

Good customer service is a team effort that required 100% cooperation. Great customer service attitudes and practices can be learned and will enhance the success of your business.

* Andy Deyo is President of HD Sports Management, a member of the Ice Arena Institute of Management Board of Regents, and the Commercial Facilities Section representative on the ISI Board of Directors.