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We recently stayed at a small hotel that featured, among other amenities, a full breakfast. On Saturday morning, a hoard of hungry guests descended on the dining room. The only wait-person was a friendly woman who was moving very fast. In spite of her energy and efficiency, trying to get 25 hungry guests their food was a challenge.

As you might expect, some of the guests were less than happy. No matter how rude or unhappy the diners were, the wait person always seemed to be smiling and happy. This “service with a smile” did wonders at calming the clients.

From a management perspective, one server for 25 guests was a little unrealistic and unfair to the employee. But I was impressed at how well she handled the situation and how much of a difference the smile made in the response of the guests.

I have said before that great customer service is more than just being friendly, but friendliness and a genuine smile are still essential tools for anyone dealing with the public. How often do we forget to smile when dealing with our customers?