Recently, I was in Las Vegas, on the sixth day of a nine day, multi-city run of speaking engagements and meetings. Rather than pack, un-pack and re-pack my tuxedo, I had arranged to have it shipped to each destination. With a black-tie event that evening, I learned that my tux had been accidently left on the truck.

It was 4 p.m. on a Sunday afternoon. The nearest tuxedo store happened to be Tuxedo Junction, about six miles away from my hotel. A very nice salesperson answered the phone. Her name was Mikka Moon. I say she was nice, but that is probably an understatement. More than nice, she was helpful.

She explained that their store closed in an hour and they were jammed because of homecoming season. She asked where I was staying and said that if I knew my clothing measurements, she could have a tux delivered to me by 5:30 p.m. The event started at 6: p.m. I said, “Let’s go!”

I gave her my measurements and credit card number. It was now 4:05. Just 35 minutes later, Julio showed up at the hotel. I met him at the bell stand and thanked him profusely.

This was a perfect example of excellent customer service. Actually, it was more of an over-the-top, wow example of customer service. Mikka had a chance to be a hero for me, and she came through.

  • Now, let’s walk through this.
  • The customer (that’s me) had a problem.
  • The salesperson was more than friendly and nice; she was helpful. She recognized there was a problem, empathized with the customer and then suggested a plan to solve that problem.
  • Once the plan was accepted, she delivered on it. She actually exceeded expectations, delivering the tux ahead of schedule.

Normally, when the customer has a complaint or a problem that is our fault, we jump to fix it — or at least we should. What makes this an even better story is that the problem was in no way the store’s fault. But nevertheless Mikka saw it as her duty to help. And help she did.

The moral of the story? The customer’s problem may not be your fault, but it’s still your responsibility to try to solve it. Isn’t that what all the best companies do

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Shep Hyken is a professional speaker and best-selling author. For more information on Shep’s speaking presentations, call 314-692-2200, email shep@hyken.com or go to www.hyken.com.