The lion and crown Ritz-Carlton logo is a combination of the British Royal Seal (the crown) and the logo of a financial backer (the lion). This logo was created by Cesar Ritz.
The legacy of The Ritz-Carlton begins with the celebrated hotelier Cesar Ritz, the “king of hoteliers and hotelier to kings.” His philosophy of service and innovations redefined the luxury hotel experience in Europe through his management of “The Ritz” Paris and “The Carlton” in London.
At the Ritz Carlton it started with first-rate customer service and it is still today the top item on the list. Their motto is “We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen.”
How do they do it? Every morning, each department at all the Ritz Hotels around the world gathers for a 15-minute meeting to share “Wow stories.” These are true stories that go above and beyond conventional customer service expectation. This accomplished two goals, one it creates employee recognition (public recognition & local fame) and second it provides motivation for everybody to do their best.
The Ritz Carlton mystique is created by anticipating the guests’ unasked questions. For example, if housekeeping notices a bottle of champagne in a bucket of melted ice, they will replace it before they are asked to do so. Why do they do it? “It offers a personal touch that shows we care.”
The three steps of service at the Ritz Carlton are:
- A warm and sincere greeting
- Anticipation and fulfillment of each guest’s needs.
- Fond farewell. Give a warm good-by and use the guest’s name.
When doing the math on 2 x 15 minutes in telling “wow stories” across 74 hotels, 365 days a year, you can figure out how many hours of training they offer to their employees. No amount of training would be effective, however, without making an emotional and memorable connection with trainees.
Lobby at the Sarasota Ritz Carlton
Some Key points to take away
- Innovate & Improve
- Compliment & Motivate
- Never stop learning
- Be engaged – stand for yourself
As Nancy Bouffingny-Enmeier ended her presentation at the YES941 meeting, she shared a quote from the book called “Leading Mind” (Howard Gardner)
“Stories speak to both parts of the human mind, its reason and emotion”
Take a cue from the Ritz Carlton and use stories to improve your customer service.
A few figures about the Ritz Carlton:
Customer Base world-wide – 800,000 1999 revenue – $1.5 Billion, a 40% increase over the past 5 years No. of employees – 32,000 world-wide The Ritz Carlton is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Marriott Intl. 74 properties located in 23 countries world-wide
The Ritz Carlton, Sarasota, Florida