Customer Service skills have been a part of me for as long as I can remember.
I remember my very first after school job ~ at a dry cleaner ~ my manager, Elsa, told me to always be polite and treat each & every customer with kindness, patience and respect.
I’ve had numerous jobs working with the public since that first part-time job as a 15 year old. I worked in retail back in the day when “the customer is always right” motto was the rule, not the exception. I mean the days when the cashier actually punched the price in the register and counted out your change. I’m talking about the old days when a store clerk actually knew something about the department they worked in. The days when the employee would actually help you find the item you’re looking for, instead of just saying, “if you don’t see it, we must be out of it”. Please don’t get me wrong, I know there are some excellent retail employees that go the extra mile to give great customer service, but it saddens me that they seem to be so far & few between. When I find such an employee, I always make sure to thank them for their great customer service 🙂
I have also worked in several different venues of the travel industry. I’ve worked security at O’Hare airport (before 9/11, thank goodness) … I’ve worked the ticket counter, the gate, the ramp/bag room, and operations for United Express (a regional airline) at O’Hare. I’ve worked in the reservations department of Apple Vacations. I’ve been a online casino travel agent in several different agencies over the span of my travel career.
I also volunteer a lot. I’ve always been the person in the meeting that is first to raise her hand to help. Many times that urge to help has placed me in positions of leadership … like being the chairperson on the committee or being the Cub Scout leader when no one else wanted to take on the commitment.
I’ve always worked with the public … all these positions require great customer service skills to be successful. All of this experience working over the years has honed my people skills, which of course, means that I have many, many (many – a lady never divulges such things) years of customer service experience.