Every once in a while a company has an opportunity to create an over-the-top customer service experience. They don’t happen every day, or they wouldn’t be special. The right story can become customer service legend to be shared with employees – and even customers. I am going to tell you a great “above and beyond” type customer service story that does just that.
Cesar Larios is a student at the Art Institute of Florida and works part-time for College HUNKS Moving and Hauling. College HUNKS does typical moves as well as trash pick-up, donation pick-ups and more. They are all about delivering an amazing customer service experience, and Cesar proved it.
So, the short version of the story is that Cesar was working a move in an assisted living facility and was in an elevator with an elderly woman when the elevator got stuck. The woman mentioned to Cesar that she could not stand for extended periods and needed to sit. Rather than letting her sit on the floor of the elevator, Cesar bent over on his hands and knees and let her sit on his back until the elevator was fixed, about thirty minutes later.
Nick Friedman, the co-founder of College HUNKS had this to say: “I thought this was a great example of old-fashioned service and helping your fellow neighbor. Our company mission is to move the world, both literally and emotionally, and this is an example of our brand coming to life.”
What I love about this story is that it ties closely to the company’s mission, which is very simple and just a few words long. The company is focused on creating a stress free experience for their customers and building leadership skills for their college student employees. Cesar delivered on the mission.
And, the company’s name ties to their brand promise. No, the HUNKS in College HUNKS doesn’t mean you get big, good-looking guys to move your “stuff.” While that is what most people might think, the word HUNKS is actually an acronym for Honest Uniformed Nice Knowledgeable Students. The brand promise is built into their name. Pretty cool!
H is for honest and is about trust.
U is for uninformed which is about neatness.
N is for nice and that’s about customer service.
K is for knowledgeable which creates confidence.
S is for students, who are the typical employees who work for College Hunks.
How many companies have their brand promise statements built into their name? That in itself is an interesting lesson. I’m not suggesting we change our names. However, once I learned what HUNKS stood for, I started thinking about the clarity of our brand promise.
The real lesson is in the story. The story has been picked up by the press. It’s created a buzz and now College HUNKS has its legendary customer service story. Will it ever get as popular as the Nordstrom story about the customer who returned tires? Doubtful, but it does give the company a story to call their legend.
Every company needs a legendary story. It may not go viral on social media channels, but it still has to be good enough to share with employees and give them something to aspire.
What is your favorite customer service story? Share a story with me and I may use it an upcoming article.
Shep Hyken is a customer service expert, professional speaker and New York Times bestselling business author. For information contact (314)692-2200 or www.hyken.com. For information on The Customer Focus™ customer service training programs go to thecustomerfocus.com. Follow on Twitter: @Hyken
(Copyright ©MMXIV, Shep Hyken)