I have made some interesting observations this summer at the theme park I am a manager at. You see, we have a gondola that takes you to the park from Glenwood Springs, Colorado, a place with varied weather conditions to say the least. In the event the gondola closes for long periods of time, we offer bus service up and down a dirt road that comes up the back side of the mountain. On rare occasions, it is not safe to drive it, and we must notify guests that they must remain on the mountain until we can continue gondola service.
Now, I have a question for you. What do you think upsets most guests more? Being told they have to wait their turn for a bus pass, or being told that they must wait on the mountain until the gondola restarts? The answer may surprise you.
When a guest wants a bus pass that they see someone else possesses, they are filled with questions.
“How do I obtain one?” “How did THAT guy get one?” “Why doesn’t SHE have to wait?”
And many others. I have been told off so many times, I have lost count. But that’s OK. It’s what I do. I used to think it was not getting something that made people say unkind things to me. I have come to learn that, in many cases, it is not that at all. It is not getting something someone else IS getting, and wondering why. That’s where human insecurity really comes out.
However, the moment I told a crowd that the rain had mad the road unsafe, and that everyone must remain on the mountain for the time being, they oddly acquiesced, and a sense of calm came over most of them. We turned it in to a party that became a memorable experience. (More on this, later). It’s strange, but that’s when I learned what makes humans more insecure. It was missing out on something someone else had. I would also see this when one guest witnessed me giving rain check tickets to a guest for one reason or another. They would then ask me for one, as well. Until they saw me give a rain check, they had been a satisfied guest. Suddenly they weren’t. I fond it fascinating, and to be honest, don’t really know what to tell you to with the info, other than pondering it when dealing with guests or building promotions for your business.
Be careful when creating new customer offers. They may make your current customers feel alienated, wondering why they were never offered what you are offering new customers. I have found the best way to explain it to them is that you were putting an offer out to increase your business, and if they feel slighted in any way, you would be happy to offer them something they feel is fair, but explain to them that you feel you have earned their business.
Human insecurity is very high right now. What can you do to help your clients feel more secure? It is worth some serious thought.