In September (just 2 months away) almost 40,000 people will descend on my hometown. They’ll come here from all over the USA and the world. They’ll come in all shapes and sizes. And they’ll have a variety of expectations in how they should be treated during their stay here in the Twin Cities.
Big events like these can be a boon to a local and regional economy. Estimates of several hundred million dollars are common when people talk of the RNC economic impact to the Minneapolis-St. Paul Economy.But the impact can reach much farther than that. In fact, if we do this thing well, the benefit to the Twin Cities can carry on for many years.
And I believe the best way to do that is to ensure we deliver amazing customer service to our RNC guests while they’re here. And, since I’m a customer service expert, here are a few of my suggestions to help make the 2008 RNC a great experience for everyone.
Top Ten Customer Service Tips for the 2008 Republican National Convention
1. Put Yourself in Their Shoes
Remember, this is a political convention. People are coming to discuss one of the three things you’re not supposed to talk about in public. Oh, and by the way, many of these people will disagree with others. So, the potential for hot tempers, emotional flareups and verbal conflicts will be extremely high.
To help them have the best experience possible, remember this. Look for signs of potential conflict and act quickly to avoid or prevent problems. Don’t get caught up in political debates while you’re serving coffee or giving directions. And, get extra rest before you go to work during the RNC so you’re mentally and physically prepared help a lot of stressed out people without losing your cool.
2. Go the Extra Mile for Everyone, Every Time
Some RNC guests will need a lot of hand-holding. They’ll be away from the resources and conveniences of their homes and offices yet they’ll still have work to do. Help them be successful and effective by going the extra mile. Offer to do more than you normally would. Show them how important they are to you, your business and your community.
3. Be Fast and Friendly
Big crowded events often sap people’s patience. Add the heat and humidity and pressure of getting things done on the road and it’s even worse. Move as quickly as you can as you help people. Be as efficient as you can and show them you respect their time. Here is where teamwork will be critical to providing great service.
4. Have Extra Patience and Tolerance
Even though some guests might not show you any patience, make sure you start each day with plenty of your own. Do whatever you have to do to be extra patient with everyone. Some RNC guests might be hard to understand because of language or cultural differences. Give them a little extra attention. Be tolerant of their differences and requests even though they might be beyond the norm for you or your company.