Everyone has a story. I think we sometimes forget that. On a recent ski trip to Colorado, I had the pleasure of meeting several employees at the Winter Park Resort who took great care of our group. When you have a remarkable experience – particularly in resort towns – it’s interesting to learn the choices that brought their employees to their jobs. And that’s where I met Emily.
If you have ever snow skied you can appreciate the process of renting skis. Emily worked in the ski shop and was simply a delight to our group. She was quick to find out if this was our first time to the resort and took the initiative to give us all the tips and tricks for our 3-day stay. Her friendly demeanor prompted me to learn more about her background.
She is originally from Beaufort, NC. And after earning a B.S. from the University of the South she decided to explore what Colorado had to offer. She’s experiencing her first year in Colorado. After a summer employed on a working bison ranch she decided to try out the winter season by working at the ski resort. “Customer service can occur anywhere,” she told us. “And what better way to see the world than to just move here and check it out?” I love that! Emily is getting the education of a lifetime while at the same time playing a key part in creating great experiences for guests who visit Colorado.
I learned these interesting tidbits in a conversation that took no more than five minutes. Think about the insight you could gain on your team if you knew (or better yet your customers knew) what made them choose your business?
- What brought them to your business?
- Where did they work and what did they do before this current job?
- What do they love best about their job? Like least?
- From their perspective, what makes your company different than the competition?
- If they attended college, what area of study did they pursue? And how are they using that degree today (or perhaps not)?
- How long have they worked in this role?
- What might be next for them?
So, why are these stories important? Every employee has a reason why they work at your business. The more you know about them and utilize that insight, the better experience your customers have. Why? It’s those little details (your employee’s previous job, what they love/hate about their job, etc) that make your employees unique to your products and services. It’s where your competitive advantage lives. It’s why Winter Park Resort hired Emily. So start asking those questions. It’s storytelling time.