Marketing Case Study

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DESIGNING AND MANAGING SERVICES

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CHAPTER 13

379

Marketing Excellence

>>The Ritz-Carlton

Few brands attain such a high standard of customer service as the luxury hotel, The Ritz-Carlton. The RitzCarlton dates back to the early 20th century and the original Ritz-Carlton Boston, which revolutionized the way U.S. travelers viewed and experienced customer service and luxury in a hotel. The Ritz-Carlton Boston was the first of its kind to provide guests with a private bath in each guest room, fresh flowers throughout the hotel, and an entire staff dressed in formal white tie, black tie, or morning coat attire. In 1983, hotelier Horst Schulze and a four-person development team acquired the rights to the Ritz-Carlton name and created the Ritz-Carlton concept as it is known today: a company-wide concentration on both the personal and the functional side of service. The five-star hotel provides impeccable facilities but also takes customer service extremely seriously. Its credo is, “We are Ladies and Gentlemen serving Ladies and Gentlemen.” According to the company’s Web site, The Ritz-Carlton “pledge(s) to provide the finest personal service and facilities for our guests who will always enjoy a warm, relaxed, yet refined ambience.” The Ritz-Carlton fulfills this promise by providing impeccable training for its employees and executing its Three Steps of Service and 12 Service Values. The Three Steps of Service state that employees must use a warm and sincere greeting always using the guest’s name, anticipate and fulfill each guest’s needs, and give a warm good-bye again using the guest’s name. Every manager carries a laminated card with the 12 Service Values, which include bullets such as number 3: “I am empowered to create unique, memorable and personal experiences for our guests,” and number 10: “I am proud of my professional appearance, language and behavior.” Simon Cooper, the company

president and chief operating officer, explained, “It’s all about

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