The customer service experience

This was the view from our conference room at the Marriott Forest of Arden yesterday – and a steady parade of 70’s entertainment and sport celebrities provided a distraction from the more serious business of customer service.
I’m first of all going to give a 10/10 score to this hotel for their customer service since I arrived on Monday – nothing has been too much trouble, including a carb-free meal last night in the bar, even though hundreds were flocking prior to their tented dinner and entertainment by the 18th.
I must admit that it was necessary to close my hotel window and break out the trusty ear-plugs before retiring last night, to the strains of what sounded like every wedding reception band that ever played.
My Servicemaster group yesterday were an intriguing change from the world of dentistry – and began the day feeling confident that they had nailed customer service and CRM.
However, as I took a journey through their lead conversion and CRM processes, it became clear to us all that there was plenty of work still to be done, especially in the area of CNE’s (as Paddi would call them).
I could not have asked for a better physical environment in which to challenge their thinking and introduce radical new ideas – I always maintain that “environments” play a key role in business – and the abundance of natural light and fresh air in the room created an open learning zone.
Just as well for me – because they did squirm on the hook of progress – old habits die hard.
In the event – a good day.
And I’m going to publicly praise here my principal contact in Servicemaster, Dave Stirling, who is under the surgeons knife on 13th August to remove a tumour from his spine. Dave was in physical discomfort yesterday – but attended the meeting none the less – and stayed behind with me for coffee afterwards to discuss plans for a meeting we are building in September.
He left me at about 6.30pm last night, obviously suffering – to drive to Leicester and take a hotel room prior to another business meeting today.
His spirit was humbling – and I wish him every success in his treatment – he has already beaten his condition mentally – and the medics now have to do their work.
It put a lot of the issues I’m dealing with at the moment into perspective.


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Chris Barrow

Chris Barrow has been active as a consultant, trainer and coach to the UK dental profession for over 20 years. As a writer, his blog enjoys a strong following and he is a regular contributor to the dental press. Naturally direct, assertive and determined, he has the ability to reach conclusions quickly, as well as the sharp reflexes and lightness of touch to innovate, change tack and push boundaries. In 2014 he appeared as a “castaway” in the first season of the popular reality TV show “The Island with Bear Grylls”. His main professional focus is as Coach Barrow, providing coaching and mentorship to independent dentistry.