The Lost Art of Customer Service

The excellent service that we just received from Woods Basement Systems has caused me to reflect on the lost art of customer service.  Seldom have I seen a more dedicated staff to the professional and expeditious performance of their job duties.  Four young men who did not waste a moment or a movement in performing they’re waterproofing task, while all the while…friendly and mannerly and courteous.


I was asked to be the Superintendent of Building Services at Southern Illinois University…many years ago.  I immediately decided that we must return to a singular dedication to customer service.  Being a Housekeeping organization, I wrote in our Handbook that , no one wants to hear why the cleaning person cannot clean.

I quoted, to the wonderful members of the department that I had been asked to lead, two of the old commercials that exemplified our dedication to customer service.  The first would be from the car rental company Hertz, where the television commercial showed the prospective driver of the sleek Hertz vehicle floating into the driver’s seat of the car with the motto, ‘Hertz puts you in the driver’s seat.’

The second commercial that I often sited was for the world renowned fast food restaurant, McDonalds, where their motto was, ‘We do it all for you!’

Mary Jane and I were frequent shoppers of the now defunct department store, Famous Barr, where the attendants were dressed in suits and formal dresses…and where they actually knew me by name and greeted me every time I entered their store.

IMG_0199Have you ever gone through a check out line at you local Walmart and not only not been greeted…but also when you say thank you to the attendant…they respond…no problem?

Have you ever felt that the store employees that waited on you had the distinct impression that they were doing you a favor?

Customer service and professionalism are a breath of fresh air and a ray of sunshine in a world that has coarsened.

B40666FD-0B5A-434D-9D92-65711E0D70E9I regularly told my Housekeeping Customers that if I did not have someone to address their custodial needs…that I would do so myself.  I often did just that!

There is a dynamic that occurs when we encounter excellent customer service.  We are reminded of the dedication to quality and outstanding performance that is still available…when those people that serve us…care about our experience…and the results of their dedication.

Southern Illinois University is once again dedicating their institution to the most precious asset of their community…their students!

I am expecting an influx of hungry humanity…looking for that spark of excellence…that drawing to the light…that separates the mediocre from the excellent!


5 responses

  1. Wow. It is indeed wonderful to hear that there are still some genuinely helpful people out there…and kudos to you for praising them! 😘

    1. Thank you my friend. 🌞

  2. It’s nice to know there are still good and dedicated people out there. I wish I could run into a car repairman that I trusted.

    1. Good customer service is difficult to find.

      1. I say that all the time, and I used to work as a customer service clerk. Our bosses were on us all the time. A lot of people that you talk to, don’t even seem to know how to talk.

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