Monthly Archives: May 2010
Whether you are a business owner or simply someone the owner put in charge, you should know that customer and client feedback is essential to your success. You should also be able to easily recognize opportunities to turn negative feedback around in your favor. People who have negative experiences are much more likely to spread the word about their disappointment, even if the business is not really at fault. You are never turning away just one unhappy consumer. You are potentially turning away hundreds, maybe even thousands of otherwise happy patrons. That’s a risk that no business should be willing to take.
Today the fire alarms went off in the Destinta Theaters in Bridgeville, PA. After exiting the theater, people herded to the front entrance to find out what was going on. As it turns out, there was an electrical error in the wiring, or some such technicality. We were told to return to our respective theaters and wait for the feature to continue. After some time in the theater, watching the ridiculously bright lights blink and listening to the blaring alarm, we are visited by a theater employee who tells us, “The fire department is on their way, and once they are here, everything will be able to start up and you have nothing to worry about.” About half an hour passes, and at about the same time I think the lights might cause me to have a seizure, a disgruntled theater patron returns to the theater and says, “They don’t know what’s going on. They’re giving out free passes.” Everyone exits the theater.
Through the grapevine, we find out that it could be over an hour before the fire department can reset the alarms. We must wait in a single long line to receive our free passes, and we must present our ticket stubs. One free pass per customer.
There was no announcement over the intercom. There was no direct communication from the staff to the customers. There were no apologies. Granted, a misfiring alarm system is not really management’s fault, but something more should have been said. We wasted our money and our time, and we were simply told to wait.
My question was, how is one free pass supposed to compensate loyal patrons for this disastrous theater experience? So we can start all over tomorrow, next week? Today was especially important to my husband and I because with our clashing schedules, we only get to see each other for a few hours about twice a week. The movie was one that we both had been looking forward to for some time, and now we might not be able to see it together at all. I can only imagine that some sense of disappointment was shared by other Destinta customers.
All of that said, the stage is set for a huge business opportunity. You have a lobby full of disappointed people and you have an incessant alarm sounding. Everyone is grudgingly lined up to see what you’re going to do to fix it. Here’s where you can turn the casual Destinta patron into a loyal customer for life. All you have to do is impress these people.
Instead, we had to fight with the manager just to get a full refund in addition to free passes. Why be cheap with the free passes? Those passes will get your customers back to your business so that your theater can redeem itself. And free passes usually buy tickets that you would not have sold otherwise. In other words, many people will debate over seeing a movie, then decide to go just because they have free passes.
If I owned that theater, I would have communicated updates over the intercom with every individual theater. I would be handing out handfuls of free passes to everyone, even the people who just showed up and haven’t paid for their tickets yet. I’d have all my employees set up to give them out and explain the reasons behind the unfortunate inconvenience. I’d have every cashier open to handle refunds. I’d have a personal apology ring over the intercom. Because even though the theater would suffer a loss by doing this, the loss could potentially be much greater if a hundred of my customers left upset. And that’s exactly what happened today at the Destinta. Hundreds of people walked right out without a single intervention from management.
My husband and I actually passed by other theaters that are closer to home just to visit the Destinta because it was one of our favorite theaters. We won’t be doing that again. I wonder how many others will return. And how many people will they talk to about today?
© Alexis Jenny, 2011.
Music is the soulful remedy to everything that could ail us. Regardless of genre preference, we know we can find the right sounds to keep us company, to inspire us, to give us hope, and to help us come to terms with what’s ahead. Music offers us peace. With ourselves. With those around us. With anything we’re preparing to leave behind.
Music fills the room! Calms us. Makes us forget our loneliness, our heartache, our anxiety… whatever it is, we are not really on our own when we have music playing.
After a busy day, music will ground us, give us energy, release mental tension, and lift our spirits. After a fun night out celebrating, music can wind down our thoughts. Music can even put us to sleep. And in the morning, we can listen to music that will wake us and set the tone for our day.
Music can motivate us. To improve ourselves. To improve our relationships. To start a project. To exercise a little longer, a little harder. To stay up late and finish our big assignments. And when the space around us becomes eerily quiet, music can help us figure out how to enjoy our own company.
So choose your music wisely. Music should be well-balanced and geared towards your physical, emotional, and mental success. And really, above all else, you just have to enjoy it. Without the love of music, music is nothing.
© Alexis Jenny, 2011.