Exemplary customer service starts at the top

Rick and RitaI’ve recently learned about two leaders who exemplify outstanding corporate customer service leadership. They are in an industry not known for innovation — automobile sales and service. Rita and Rick Case now own 14 dealerships in 3 states with nearly 1000 employees and own the largest Honda dealership in the world.

How do they do it? As you would guess, they not only hire great people, but they treat them well. The employees in turn treat the customers well. But the leaders have designed ways to reward the customers for continuing to do business with them. Here are a few examples:

  • Rewards program — Customers earn points for every purchase they make. These points can be redeemed for discounts on future purchases, including new vehicles.
  • Free car wash — With a purchase of a vehicle, you get a card that allows you to get a free car wash anytime you want.
  • Gas station on site — Rewards program members save 5-25 cents/gallon.
  • Free rental car with service.
  • Clerk of the Courts office — At their main dealership people can pay their speeding tickets, get their driver’s licenses renewed, and get a marriage license. They even have a chapel so couples can get married! Forty to 50 couples a month say their nuptials there.
  • Salespeople call customers monthly — They tell them how many rewards points they’ve accumulated, how they can be redeemed, and any specials the dealership is running.

Rick and Rita also show their customers they care about their community by being active on charity boards and chairing large fund raisers. Their main dealership is a voting site. Additionally, after being concerned about people being trapped in submerged vehicles, they manufactured and distributed 50,000 emergency escape hammers.

What could you try that is out of the norm to show your customers you care?

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