I was reading the Seattle Times last weekend and came across this article on customer service.
In the years of my customer service experience, the motto Smile, Eye Contact, and Use Last Name has always been the key to obtaining great customer service.
For example, the hand shake was not promoted probably because of cultural issues, or maybe it’s because customers don’t want to shake hands with the doorman, bellhop, and front desk clerk when checking into a Hotel. You can clearly see the difference between a Motel 6 and a Four Seasons Hotel!
The article focuses on banks, along with handshakes and smiles, where potential bank robberies deceased with good customer service. Do potential bank robbers think twice about robbing friendly people?
Maybe it is a coincidence that newer high-tech cameras were used at the same time when this customer service initiative was launched?
What are your thoughts?
Good service scares off bank robbers, FBI says
The state’s biggest drop in bank robberies in nearly 20 years isn’t being attributed to fancy new security technology, but to enthusiastic handshakes and smiles.
Nearly 100 fewer banks were robbed in the state last year compared with 2006, said the Seattle FBI, which credits its program designed to train bank employees to be nice to would-be robbers.
FBI Special Agent Larry Carr says the training program called “Safecatch” — developed 2 ½ years ago with First Mutual Bank and later launched among regional banks — teaches bank personnel to unnerve potential robbers with good customer service.
By focusing attention in the guise of good customer service on all who enter a bank, Carr says, bank employees can unnerve robbers, who generally try to remain as anonymous as possible when approaching a teller.
The program also trains bank tellers how to respond after a robbery has occurred. Because many bank robbers are repeat offenders, arresting one can prevent several robberies, he said.
Washington state’s banking industry lost more than $700,000 in 176 robberies in the state in 2007, according to statistics released Friday by the FBI. It was the first time in 20 years that Washington, a longtime hotbed for bank robberies, had fewer than 200 bank robberies, according to the Seattle FBI.
“We implement this strategy, and numbers go to a 20-year low,” Carr said. “Is it a coincidence?”