The maid may have missed refilling your coffee supply (near and dear to my heart!), your restaurant meal may not arrive exactly as ordered, or your rental car may be filthy from the previous renters. When any of these or similar issues happen to you, what do you do?
Do you shrug your shoulders, say “Oh Well” and figure it’s not worth the bother to fix the situation?
Do you complain to your co-worker, friend any anyone else who will listen as to what lousy service you received?
Or do you talk to a person who can really do something about it?
Most of us do the first two things routinely and the third thing rarely, and I’m the guiltiest party of them all.
I recently had several challenging events at a hotel where I stayed for several weeks. Each week it was something else that wasn’t right. I mentioned several of the items to the desk clerk, but he really wasn’t the person I should have talked to. I should have asked to speak to the manager of the hotel so we could address the items head-on. None were major and all could easily have been fixed (getting charged for internet that should have been free with my rate was the major repeating offense).
Instead of asking for a quick chat with the manager, I did the “Oh Well” routine week after week until the issues added up so big that I announced “no more of this hotel!”
Had I spent just a fraction of the time I spent being frustrated and just talked to the right person, I wouldn’t be writing this article today and a hotel wouldn’t have lost a valuable repeat customer.
I guess my last complaint to the desk clerk got to the manager (especially since the words This is the LAST TIME I’m staying here! came out of my mouth) as I received this email:
I would first like to thank you for your business. We have enjoyed being your home away from home this year. We were informed that you have had some continual issues at the hotel and have decided to move to another lodging option.
I hope that you will give us an opportunity to fix some of the concerns before moving on. I want you to know that we have been … Again, we value your business and hope you will give me a chance to rectify these issues asap.
I appreciate the manager of this hotel reaching out to me, albeit too late for any renewed interest on my part in revisiting this property. Though I do regret not speaking to him sooner as I’m sure he would have been very concerned over my repeated issues and would have taken care of them very promptly.
So the next time you feel you’re not getting the service you expect from a travel provider (or from any provider of a product or service for that matter), speak up! Get with someone who has the power to help with the situation. My mistake was assuming the desk clerk would pass along my issues to someone above, but that didn’t occur until it was too late.
On the flipside, be sure to get compliments up to the proper person as well. The majority of us have more good experiences than bad, so pass along a word of Thanks, I really appreciated … at each chance you get.