With the summer tourism season ramping up, Northern Arizona SCORE wants to remind the business owners in the three counties it serves (Coconino, Mohave and Yavapai) that it is critical to ensure they are doing their part to provide excellent customer service. This level of service should not only be for visitors, but also the local residents who are the ones that keep the engines running all year!

What kind of a SCORE do you give your business for customer service? When was the last time you, as an owner, spent time to watch your employees? Are your customers greeted when they walk in the door? If you have a restaurant or bar, how long does it take a server to get the order taken? Do you or your manager approach the customer to see if they are satisfied? Oh, and another thing – ARE YOUR RESTROOMS CLEAN?

This all sounds pretty basic doesn’t it? Well, if it is so basic, then everyone in the northern Arizona region should be doing it!

USA Today recently identified Flagstaff, Prescott, Sedona, Lake Havasu and, of course, the Grand Canyon as communities listed as four of the top 10 major attractions in the state of Arizona. That being said, it is up to all entrepreneurs to continue to focus on superior customer service to continue to retain this national high ranking.

Flagstaff and the towns servicing the Grand Canyon are tourist towns, and great ones, and business people need to make sure that their customers are not only happy when they leave, but they are also providing that all-important good word of mouth when recommending your hotel, your restaurant, your shop and most importantly OUR TOWN!

Owners and managers need to expend the efforts to train their employees so they fully understand the importance of customer service and the many benefits it provides not only to their business, but also to the community. Eventually everyone has a tendency to take customer service for granted, yet at the same time we all expect good customer service when we go out to eat, go shopping or even when we go for medical services.

Quality customer service is what results in that critical element Customer Satisfaction. When a customer is well-treated, statistics show they have a tendency to spend more money. When more money is spent, this results in more sales for the business, which then equates to more sales tax revenue for the community. It’s a WIN! WIN! The customer is happy, the business owner is happy and the city or town government is happy! See how that works?

USA Today said, “Arizona's natural attractions – especially the majestic Grand Canyon – have long been a draw to adventure travelers from around the world. But the Copper State has plenty more to offer beyond its red rocks and deep gorges. Old West towns, ancient ruins and engineering marvels rank among its top attractions.”

With such effective (and free) publicity on a national platform, it behooves all businesses to put that “best foot” forward and keep visitors and locals alike satisfied and coming back again and again. AND, once again, it’s a WIN-WIN for everyone! Let’s all have a great season and team up to continue to maintain our reputation as a go-to destination!

If you need help improving your customer service or other aspects of your business, contact the local SCORE office by calling 778-7438, emailing us at scoreoffice@scorenaz.org or go to www.northernarizona.score.org.

SCORE provides a FREE service to businesses as well as conducts workshops throughout the year for a minimal charge.

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