Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Smiles in the Aisles

When I went on a company-sponsored cruise a few years ago, I was dismayed by the pressure to be pleased at all times. It's not that our company was necessarily supporting this manipulative practice, but the hospitality industry certainly was. Am intrigued by the idea that happiness is something you can mandate, cajole, engineer, or  produce.

It seems that a significant part of the business of offering great service these days is telling people you’re offering great service. Persuade people to like you by telling them how much they like you. Give them a gift and leave the price tag on; make sure they know about all its features and how "perfect" it is for them. As if they have no choice but to like it. And be happier as a result.

Amazing how often this actually works. People are happy because you tell them what a great time they're having (Though, silly me, I want to reserve the right to come to my own conclusion).

On a flight home from Orlando I noticed (and yes, smiled) at Delta Airlines’ boast of “75 years of smiles in the aisles.”

Is labeling the java “great coffee” supposed to set people up to enjoy it more? Does it work? 

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