Last Saturday, I discussed the positive impact a cashier had on me when she verbally acknowledged me waiting. She saw me waiting in line and let me know that I could visit another cashier or continue to wait. The end result was she made me feel that my time was important to her. What happens when you can’t say something to the customer? Here’s a great example – when servicing vehicles on a Saturday its not impossible to build up a line of cars waiting in cue to have their oil change performed. Sometimes these lines can be 1 or more cars deep depending on whats happening on the car in the bay.
Over the years, I developed a zero driveway policy. In essence, my staff and I would ensure no customer waiting in line would leave – period. There were many aspects to us executing this policy but I will focus on the acknowledgement part. As soon as a vehicle pulled up to the service bay waiting to enter we would walk to the back door, make eye contact with the customer and signal the amount of time it would be before someone would come out to speak with them. This would usually be anywhere from 1-2 minutes depending on how busy we were. The key to doing this was once the customer knew we had seen them and given them a time there was no reason for them to leave due to lack of attention. This worked 100% of the time. From time to time, we would even hear a customer say that they decided to wait because we had acknowledged them.