Posts Tagged ‘susie burns’

In a recent trip to Hawaii, I had the most amazing customer service experience in the First Class seating of United Airlines.

Firstly, it is just exhilarating to be going to Hawaii.

Secondly, being upgraded to First Class at the last minute – simply mind blowing.

Finally, having the customer experience that is just outstanding – that takes the cake. If you have been on flights where the personnel are rude, unfriendly, where you are treated like cattle and the service is rubbish, you will get what I am going to say.

As I got on the flight, I saw this pleasant face that greeted me with a smile at 9:30am. She took my jacket and gave me a glass of champagne. Yes, that is one of the reason why Hawaii is a popular destination…As I sunk into the seat and saw the plane take off, I saw miles and miles of ocean underneath. And then before the meal was served the captain had a plan to play a game where the passengers were given Distance and Speed and they had to calculate the Hawaiian time (precisely to the second) when the plane would be mid-way. Then he offered a CD to the winner as a reward. Me and my husband, got into it – the engineer in both of us took over the lazy traveler.

We got our heads into it and the air hostess kept smiling as she saw the passion and the energy with which we were feverishly making calculations. She came to us when we were done and simply smiled and said, “I am going to take your answer to the captain, I want it to be on the top. I am confident you are the winners”. We smiled and just wished that other people will be in a vacation mood.

The time flew, we got done with our meal service and as the plane was about an hour from destination, at that time the captain announced the winner. Alas! we had lost.  We were short by one second to the correct answer. We both smiled at each other as we heard the air hostess break the news to us. Then, all of a sudden, she came over to us and said, “You both deserve a prize”. And then she left. When she returned she had a Chilean Red wine bottle with her and she said, “You were short by one second, you are winners, this is your prize”.

I was amazed at her and thanked her. Her graciousness was commendable. I guess she made me a loyal customer of United. I asked her “How long have been working for United?” She said, “Twenty Years”. I was enthused to see that not only United had retained an employee for twenty years, but also nurtured them to be relationship ambassadors.

Social Media Advantage

And this story becomes part of my series since social media now allows me to thank United and Susie Burns for their extraordinary service. I will be sending a personal email to Susie with a link to this article. Just my way of acknowledging her in today’s social media world. Moreover, @unitedairlines is the twitter handle for United and as I tweet this article with their handle they will get to see this it, so no need to send a “thank you” letter to the customer service department. And it is possible, they might RT it for their ~ 135K followers on Twitter to read – that is pure word of mouth web 2.0 marketing.  Moreover, my FB. twitter and LinkedIn networks will see this.

There is no better PR than a compelling customer service story and this is an example of how customers are sharing their experiences. And that too FREE of charge to United – now that’s what I call a Home Run!