‘When a guest wants a fight, you may want to let them win but you
don’t have to lie down’
I felt like this last week when a guest came to purchase an annual pass. She claimed she had been told by phone the day before by our front desk staff that the annual pass was $22.95 not $29.95, as it actually is.
She held her ground and without actually coming out and asking for the lower price (which would have been better) she felt like it was not her fault. She also had been told by my lead that it’s not the first time that’s happened. That was a huge mistake.
When I entered the scene, just by walking by, I quickly heard the entire story but decided to stand my ground. I apologized several times and asked if she remembered who exactly she spoke with and she answered no. I asked if it was possible that she misheard, she answered no. I even tried to give her an analogy of going to Wal-Mart to buy an item because you heard it was on sale only to find out you had been given the wrong information. Wal-Mart would definitely not budge. She didn’t care about that.
I again held my ground and offered a complimentary cabana for her first visit, which was a value exceeding the difference in the annual price she wanted to pay and the actual price. She then proceeded to tell me that she was in the hospitality business and it was our fault she had been given the wrong information, so she said she should be compensated in some way. I reminded her politely that I had offered a cabana complimentary.
I didn’t want to win the argument but I definitely didn’t want to just lie down. After all, she had just a claim that someone had told her, no name, no notes, nothing to give her credibility. She certainly was not what I would consider the’ ideal guest’ (see past blog), but she was a guest none the less.
I finally had to excuse myself with the offer of a cabana free and the normal annual pass price.
This was last week and I’m still wondering if I did the right thing. Should I have just given her the price she expected? The issue would have been over a lot faster and she may have actually thanked me. Or did I protect the integrity of our product?
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