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Was there last night for first time and agreed on the hotel ...

But not on "very few SaaS organizations put any emphasis on the "service" piece"

I think this is almost categorically wrong. If you look at any SaaS company that has gone up to say $10m in revenue, 50% of the reason is customer service. Beyond that, perhaps not, but the only way you can get people to buy as a SaaS vendor getting going is a quid-pro-quo that service and support will be great ... it's a key reason BigCos take a risk on an up-and-comer

When I look at the AppExchange reviews for example for all the top performers there, almost all rave about support ... b/c you can get there without it ...



You make a great point with the hotel. When I worked at a hotel while in college, they had us watch a video about the customer who doesn't complain, they just never come back. It really resonated with me because complaints for the most part are easy to rectify and are often useful for building relationships depending on how well the issue is resolved.

You gave them ample opportunity to fix the problem but it fell on deaf ears. Not only are they potentially losing your business but there is also that silent portion of potential repeat customers with whom they have lost. Marketing costs are too high to get people in the door just once, you have to bring them back over and over to be successful, hence why loyalty programs are so pervasive now.

I know personally, some brands with whom I have had issues are those that I am most loyal to now.

I had such a bad experience with Mastercard today that I went back to re-read your rant about Rosewood (which thought was quite amusing...although I really do like that place - except for the terrible acoustics in that very LOUD dining room. Too many hard surfaces).

MC sent me a new card a couple of weeks ago. Then they called me to discuss potential fraud on my account. I checked the account online and found a zero balance so I did not call them back until today.

It turns out one of their merchant's servers was hacked so it was just a precaution. The problem was that when they issued a new card I had to register it online to see the latest charges and balances - and if I had done so I would have seen that I had a small balance on the account to pay off last month. Well, I missed the payment deadline. They charged me $39.99 late fee, plus $2 in interest.

When I asked them to reverse the late fees and interest, they refused. I immediately cancelled the account and paid it off. I'm sure I could have escalated the situation to a manager and gone through the hassles of getting the charges reversed but why bother? Not worth it. I just moved on.

BTW, it was my Shell Mastercard. I got 5% rebate every time I got gas at Shell. Given that I have a 3 mile commute, I probably blew an entire year's worth of "savings" on that one late fee. Oh well.

So, after the visit from the Managing Director, are you satisfied that they (Rosewood) are serious about improving customer service and will you be back for Breakfast?
Funny that at an established Hotel, like Four Seasons Silicon Valley, you would never even second guess the level of service provided and the first person you would have pointed out the broken glass to would have themself initiated the clean up. Rosewood needs "Old World" service in their "new" world.

Contrary to popular opinion, outsourcing of customer service operations is improving customer service overall. Due to the low cost, it is now easier to get a customer service representative on the phone. Representatives overseas also tend to be happier with their jobs, and it comes across over the phone.

The problem here is the company proved it makes empty promises, so who is to say tomorrow it will not make another on an issue that REALLY mattered?

Id probably do the same.

Al Costa


Sorry to hear about your experience. Rosewood is a hotel management company, I have yet to visit their property in Palo Alto, however Customer Service is key and your experience was not acceptable. Your message regarding delivering effective customer service put me in the place of question, "how does one (a business) actually deliver an effective customer service experience." My opinion is that it requires 2 denominators; training, and hiring the right people. Training provides constancy, which equates to 20% of customer service; the right person provides the rest and then some (80++).
I have not yet visited the Palo Alto property, that being said, my personal experience with Rosewood has been exceptional. I leave an open invitation for you to come and experience a Rosewood resort that has effective customer service, Cordevalle San Martin CA. I have no ties to Rosewood other than I am a member at Cordevalle. I truly love Cordevalle.

Seems the bigger the company the less customer service you get. If i ever get 'big' i will make sure i remember how i got there and provide equal customer service no matter the size of the sale.
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