How One Southwest Airlines Employee Delivered Exceptional Customer Service

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    Lost Bag Reported to the Baggage Service Office in Kansas City

    Have you ever arrived at your airline destination – only to find out that your bag didn’t make it? That’s what happened to me at about 4pm yesterday in Kansas City.

    We woke up this morning in a tiny town two hours outside of KC. We’re here for our family reunion, and I’m without fresh clothing and (horrors!) makeup.

    Mina’s Customer Service Exceeds Southwest Airline’s Marketing Claims

    I’m experiencing a classic example of how a company does it RIGHT. I applaud Mina (Southwest was not allowed to give me her last name) in KC’s Baggage Service Office. She delivered excellence – authentic, personable, empathic, and truly conscientious communication at every turn.

    As it turned out, my bag was mistakenly picked up at baggage claim by someone helping two ladies in wheelchairs – who then drove my bag to Branson, Missouri. Mina called them and constantly stayed on top of the situation to coordinate my bag’s return to the airport. She communicated with me honestly, updating me as to the logistics and timing of getting my bag back.

    Marketing Meets Operations

    It’s 11am now, and according to the Baggage Service Office, the courier should arrive with my bag at any moment.

    The real takeaway for business marketers is this:

    WHEN OPERATIONS DELIVERS WHAT MARKETING MEASSAGES CLAIM, COMPANIES WIN.

    Marketers need to stay in close contact with Customer Service and customers’ communications. It is the only true barometer of a company’s success with customers. When feedback is consistently negative, and the marketing message doesn’t match the customers’ experience, operations must take note and make changes.

    Even though it’s been inconvenient (hey, nothing’s perfect), thanks to Mina, I feel great about Southwest Airlines.

    Wow – As I write this, the bag just arrived – as prominsed!

    Have you experienced examples of marketing messages NOT matching customer service? How about exceeding customer service?

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    ABOUT Lisa M. Chapman: With offices in Nashville Tennessee, but working virtually with international clients, Lisa M. Chapman serves her clients as a business and marketing coach, business planning consultant and social media consultant. As a Founder of iBrand Masters, a social media consulting firm, Lisa Chapman helps clients to establish and enhance their online brand, attract their target market, engage them in meaningful social media conversations, and convert online traffic into revenues. Email: Lisa @ LisaChapman.com