- Appearance: Shirts should be tucked in, employees should wear the correct uniform, and cleanliness is a must.
- Smile: It shows the customer you are happy they are there and you are ready to help.
- Eye contact: This signals acknowledgement, connection and attention. Without eye contact, people are not encouraged to share their information.
- Body language: Consider your posture and other mannerisms. Does your body language give the message that you are ready and anxious to serve the customer?
You also may want to consider shaking the person's hand or moving from behind the counter to greet the customer. This is your chance to leave a lasting impression. When we communicate in person, 55 percent of the impact is made with body language, 38 percent with tone and seven percent with words.
Make first impressions a priority
The challenge in the rental world is that you often hire people with a technical and operational background. They are hard workers and strong contributors to your company. However, some lack the customer service and sales skills needed to deliver that positive and memorable first impression.
Here are some simple techniques to ensure a memorable and consistent impression throughout the organization:
- Script a greeting: Make certain all employees know what to say. This creates consistency. For the phone greeting, place the script next to the phone.
- Practice or role-play: Act out both the phone and in-person greeting. These practice sessions help employees learn the greeting and reinforce how important it is to your company.
- Set an example: If you are the manager, make certain your employees observe you using the right greeting and setting the right tone.
- Provide feedback: When you hear employees delivering a great greeting, let them know. Coach them if they are not following company standards.
- Measure the results: Mystery shop employees to see how they are performing. Keep looking for ways to improve.
In addition, you should talk to some of your regular customers and ask them for feedback. They may recognize areas of improvement you do not see. They'll appreciate being acknowledged as an important contributor to your business.
Your first impression may seem simple enough, but it does make a difference. It is a great way to stand out from the competition and get a relationship started on the right track. Don't leave the first impression to chance - set your team up for success.