Tis the season for Americans to gather around a table with their family and friends, stuff their faces with turkey and pie and watch football. But the ‘reason for the season’ is to give thanks, so today we’re giving thanks to three customer service stories where employees went above and beyond to care for their customers.
1. Signing Starbucks Barista
This story comes from coffee chain Starbucks, who should be proud of a front-line employee who went above and beyond to meet a customer’s needs.The story starts with 23-year-old Ibby Piracha, a deaf man who goes to his local Starbucks in Leesburg, VA several times a week. Piracha took to the internet to recount an encounter he had with a Starbucks Barista on one of his frequent trips, saying that when he went to order, to his surprise the Barista asked what he wanted in American Sign Language. Then she handed him a note that said, “I’ve been learning [American Sign Language] just so you can have the same experience as everyone else.” Piracha remarked to the Washington Post that “I was like ‘wow.’ It brought a smile to my face,” Piracha said. “I was really surprised she had started signing. It wasn’t anything I had asked her to do. She had taken her own initiative and she had done it herself.”
2. “Fly” Pizza Party
Airlines have been in hot water this year in terms of bad customer experiences. Two even made our list of the top customer service disasters of the year. But here enters Frontier Airlines with a heartwarming story for a change. What started off as a nightmarish situation for passengers aboard a flight from Washington, D.C., to Denver, was rectified by a sympathetic (and hungry) pilot.
After severe thunderstorms, the flight was diverted to southern Wyoming, turning what should have been a 3 hour flight into an almost 7 hour catastrophe. Then the captain came on the overhead speaker and reportedly said “Ladies and gentleman, Frontier Airlines is known for being one of the cheapest airlines in the U.S., but your captain is not cheap. I just ordered pizza for the entire plane.” And he followed through! Over 30 pizzas bought with his own money were delivered to both the crew and the passengers. Any story that ends in both pizza and happy customers is good in our book.
3. Nicolas Cage?
Companies have been known to get some laughs via their special request feature. For example, there’s an entire blog dedicated to when people have any “special instructions” for their pizza, (check out this pizza delivery person’s favorite One Direction member, or a truly stellar drawing of a giraffe).
But Whitney Peak Hotel in Reno took this to a whole new level, as a Reddit user describes. As part of the special request feature, the user requested that a picture of American actor Nicolas Cage be placed on their pillow, and wow did the hotel run with this request. Variations of Nic Cage’s photo were placed on the windows, in the closets and more. This is what true dedication to customer requests looks like, check out the pictures for yourself:
Great customer experiences often rely on the unexpected and go above and beyond. This is the secret to keeping customers and forging a lifelong bond with a brand. All of these employees embraced this customer service spirit, and created experiences that we can all learn from and be grateful for on this holiday of giving.