Close Attention

Often it is a tiny detail that creates a memory that creates loyalty.

This happened for me at a charming restaurant in Franschhoek. The waiter was at our table within a minute of us sitting down and gave us an excellent description of their specials of the day and the wines he that he recommended. Bev ordered a still water and I ordered a glass of Sauvignon Blanc. Our waiter brought our drinks and placed them before us before taking our food order.

I almost missed the awesome display observation from the waiter. As background, you are probably aware of the fact that my right arm ends just below the elbow. I reached across my table setting to pick up my wine from its normal position in line with my shorter arm. Only, as I reached across, did I realise that our waiter had placed the wine glass on the left hand side of the setting. 

What made this moment truly amazing was that no other waiter has ever placed my glass on the left hand side. This was the first waiter, to this day, that had genuinely observed and paid close attention to us as his guests. The result was a surge of positive emotions from me and the creation of a lifelong memory.

We almost always, in the busyness of the moment, do not pause to pay really close attention to our tourism guests. We forget that each guest is different. Close observation allows us to notice clues that will allow us to deliver a truly super-wow experience that turns those guests into members of our Marketing Department.

As The Tourism Coach, may I ask you when last did you pause to sense how you could turn a moment into a tourism experience that sets you apart and creates life-long memories? Our scripted greetings and interactions eventually sound insincere and the secret is to seek spontaneous moments to create an authentic connection.

As you get busier with the international season, see if you can create a scrapbook of these interactions and have your staff sharing their magic moments with each other at a weekly boast session.

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