At the center of every service is the customer. Last week’s feature was a tease about our need to be mindful of customers, looking at them from their respective service environments.
Therefore, based on the functionality of services, we should be seeing customers as passengers in transport service environments, as patients in medical service environments, as clients within legal service environments, as visitors at tourism facilities, and as guests in hospitality service environments.
The need to make these distinctions will become clearer as the discussion progresses. However, in the hospitality industry, the quality of interaction with guests is what transforms the service into being hospitable!
What then is Service?
Once we have sorted out the issues about who a customer is, we need to be clear about what service is. It has many definitions:
Service is an “(intangible) act or use for which a consumer, firm, or government is willing to pay. – Wikipedia
Others generally indicate that service is the transfer of non-physical goods during a transaction from the seller to the buyer. It may involve handling tasks for someone else, from physical labor to providing information.
Perhaps with my bias as a hospitality professional, I will go with the formula below.
By this definition, creating an experience as part of the package of what the guest wants is what the hospitality industry should be aiming at! Providing hospitality creates the experience ‘customers’ crave over just performing a transaction.
Service vs Hospitality: What is the Difference?
WATCH Service vs Hospitality
A Hotel Guest:
‘I remember when they take care of the basics, like clean sheets, a clean bathroom, and modern furniture. (See, I’m not too tough to please!) However, I always remember when there are little extras that make it an experience instead of a stay.’
Great service follows processes, and SOPs (standard operating procedures). Unfortunately, personnel just practice, implement and serve guests, without engaging them much. I call it “JUST A SERVICE”.
Hospitality has endless ways to make someone feel important, by anticipating their needs, and MAKING THEM FEEL SERVED!
Service environments in the Hospitality industry should aim at connecting with guests to delight them.
- Create a welcoming environment
- Create an informative environment
- Create an entertaining environment
- Create a caring and hassle-free environment
WITHOUT FORGETTING TO COLLECT THE CASH!
Look out for next week’s feature about communication and customer service.