Customer ServiceI recently had an amazing meal at Gibbston Valley Winery in Queenstown, New Zealand. What stood out for me wasn’t just the quality of the food but the service we received from Meg, the restaurant supervisor. She was friendly, attentive, chatty, knowledgeable yet professional at all times. She genuinely cared whether diners were enjoying their experience and went out of her way to ensure that every person in our group was well looked after.

This got me thinking about what made Meg so good at her job and such a great ambassador for the winery. Clearly she loves what she does and has a genuine interest in people – a necessity when working in the hospitality industry! However, there is more to it than that. It was obvious that her employers look after her well and have invested in good training both in the approach she should take with customers and in her knowledge of the wine-making process.

For me, this is the key to delivering great customer service. Look after your team: invest in training them well and reward their effort and loyalty. If your team members enjoy what they do, feel confident in all aspects of their role and feel valued, this will come across in the way they deal with your customers. Making people feel good is infectious! People who enjoy what they do, want to share their experience with others.

A well-trained, happy, productive team is one of the most effective ways of driving your business forward, keeping your customers coming back for more and hopefully talking about their great experience.

While we’ve all heard that news of bad customer service reaches twice as many ears as praise for a good service experience, what’s also true is that customers generally show appreciation for great service with their wallets and will want to do business with you again!

I’m looking forward to my next visit to Gibbston Valley – that’s for sure!