Service recovery is a topic I try to minimize because the goal is to prevent problems so that recovery isn’t necessary. But this is the real world and “stuff happens” – even when dealing with great organizations. Unfortunately this reality played out years ago on Katie and Nic’s (our daughter and new son-in-law’s), wedding day. An entire series of unfortunate events resulted in all the wrong flowers and a wedding cake that would have put the Leaning Tower of Pisa to shame. It was so bad that eventually the cake had to be separated, the spacers removed and the cake restacked —- still leaning! To Katie and Nic’s credit they kept a sense of humor saying, “Today isn’t about cake and flowers.”
That takes us to the service recovery. Of course we expected a full refund, which the company provided with an apology. But what we couldn’t have guessed was the personal touch they added to recover from the faux pas. When Katie and Nic returned from their Hawaiian honeymoon the store manager and the district manager called to request a meeting. They went to Katie’s office to again extend their apologies, and present her with a very generous wedding gift. They also communicated with me offering assurance that the situation was used as a learning experience and asking what they could do to regain my confidence. They are already well on their way!