As Jason mentioned the other day, we recently worked with Enterprise to rent a car during our week of road trips while our car was in the shop. I am consistently impressed with this company, and it’s not just the local branch in Madison, it’s everywhere! The employees are friendly and sincere, and they go above and beyond to make you their number one priority. They do the little things like walk you to your car, offer you a bottle of water, turn the car on for you, and ask for feedback on their service. They do business the way it should be done, in service to their clients, with smiles on their faces. As I’ve heard from the employees, it is definitely a top-down philosophy. There must be some amazing vision and leadership for this to trickle down to all of the people on the front lines.
As you may know from the commercials, “they pick you up.” So, during the ride from our home to the rental office the branch manager, who was my driver, and I started chatting. I complimented her on the notable customer service I am always receiving. Then we got talking about their client base. It turns out that a large majority of their customers are people who have recently got into an accident and need a car, so that their car can get fixed (just like us). So, they are working a lot with insurance companies and grumpy people. (Yuck! Talk about stress.) Let’s be honest, most people who have a banged up car for one reason or another are not in the best mood. She mentioned that they often get the frustration and anger taken out on them. I empathized, but she would not accept. She said, “Hey, we figure if they can get their venting done on us, then they won’t take it out on the next guy and maybe they’ll feel better.” Wow. What an attitude! Now that is true compassion, not a word often affiliated with customer service.
Wouldn’t it be great if we modeled the same compassion in our daily interactions? Too often we practice what I like to call the “stress mess relay race.” You start your day just fine, then you come into contact with a stressed-out mess of a person, who leaves you feeling gunked up. Next, you cross paths with someone else and inadvertently pass it onto them. The baton just keeps moving. It’s like the opposite of those cool Liberty Mutual Insurance commercials. They always give me the chills…
It’s time to chuck that stress baton to the wind. Sure, you will get plenty handed to you throughout the day, but it’s up to you if you pass them on or not.
[tags] Enterprise Rent-A-Car, Liberty Mutual, stress, compassion[/tags]
I agree that Enterprise is a good company. We had a fantastic rep here a few weeks ago who took the time to answer all our questions, show us the technical features of the car (Sirius satellite radio & such). The poor guy was working in a tiny rural airport location in 80 – 90 degree weather and no A/C! Wow. Yet he still “kept his cool.”
I’m so glad you told the branch manager about the great service – I wish now I had done the same!
I LOVE those Liberty Mutual commercials. They inspire me to do the same for others.
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