As we looked back at our recent experience of a service, we identified moments, may be good or bad, that left mark to us as customers. Generally, these moments can define our experience and influence when we give ratings to these businesses.
These moments were defined by the principles by which the owners and staff succeeded or failed in providing.
When I received a confirmation message after booking my appointment, I felt the effort of being clear and reassuring of the service. After looking at my beautiful nails, I felt taken care of by the polite and competent nail technicians.
How about in your experience? What do you think were the service design principles the business owner commits to? What specific principles do you resonate with? Would you like your customers to experience the same? What principles are aligned with your why statement?
All customers, consciously or unconsciously, have expectations as to how their needs will be satisfied. These expectations can either be about how the actual service goes, like how a salon customer feels about her new hair color, or how clean and good-smelling the clothes are after an hour in a machine at a laundromat. Or, these expectations can be about the experience even before or even after the service itself. For example, they hope to be greeted with a smile once they enter the salon, or be provided with an entertainment while waiting for their laundry to dry up. All these expectations, may it be about the actual service provided, or not, have a direct impact on your business’ ability to satisfy your customers. In order to prepare ahead for these, design principles will guide you.
Let me share with you the design principles I practice for my business. Remember the categories by which I asked you to rate your experience? Those are pertaining to these exact principles!
The workshops that I offer are designed to have clear scaffolded instructions to guide the beginners as they start their calligraphy journey. I love adding check-in and check-out prompts as opportunities for the participants to get to know one another, making the entire experience more human while encouraging social learning. The workshops are also offered in weekends to accommodate working folks. In every session, I remind them that there is no one expert in the class, but we are all in this journey together, learning together.
These are just some of the practices that I integrated in my workshop to exhibit the principles I commit to. How about you? Can you now imagine how you will put your service design principles in action?
If you hope to give the gift of clarity in your service, show menu food images true to what you are offering and all prices updated. If you want to be human, take a step back and check how fair your pricing is. To be inclusive, make sure to offer options and alternatives on how customers can pay, aside from receiving cash, set up your digital portals. If you want your nail spa customers to feel empowered, encourage your staff to be more delightful in their interactions and maybe add some decors with motivational quotes on your walls.
Now let’s go to your business. To what principles would you like your service to revolve around?