Monday, November 29, 2010

For Future Reference

The next time you stay at a hotel here are some things you may want to remember:

1. Be Nice To The Front Desk Clerk. In any job customer service people are blamed for all sorts of things that aren't actually their fault. For example I have been blamed for everything from the location of the hotel, placement of the indoor trashcan, lack of available milk and juice at night, and electronics that do not work. There is actually not much I can do about many of these problems except apologize and perhaps give you a room upgrade/room move (the upgrade/room move would only be for electronics in the room that aren't working). I did not build the hotel here, it is up to the manager where the trashcans go, and the Breakfast Host holds the only set of keys to the dairy fridge and juice machine. I could not get into these things even if I wanted to! What I do have control over are room charges, key distribution, wake-ups calls, phone transfers, bill payments, touristy questions and your overall comfort, but that only goes so far as: if your TV doesn't work or your heater smells funny, I will come and try to fix it. Don't act like I personally sabotaged your TV and/or heater before you arrived.

Furthermore, getting huffy and upset at me in general is not going to do much but raise your blood pressure and put me on the defense. Sure, I will still give you ample customer service, but maybe I won't let you know we have wireless all throughout the building and you can just try to figure that out on your own. When things are a miss I will do all I can to assist you and make you happy. If, however, you continue to act like I am intentionally trying to make your night as stressful as possible, just remember: I may not have the ability to produce juice, but I do have access to the maintenance closet and I do know how to shut the power off to just one room.

2. We Hear Everything. When I first started working here I had a group of three guys come up to the front desk to ask about lengthening their stay (I think I wrote about them in my first hotel post actually). They were very nice and very flirty and when they had finally finished joking around with me at the front desk they headed back to their rooms. The entire lobby area echos and the stairwell especially so as they climbed the stairs I heard loud and clear:

"Damn man, shoulda tapped that."
"I know, man! I know."
"You wanna go down there and ask?"
"Nah, man, nah."
"Ya serious, dude? Ya could get her number."
"Nah, man."
"Man, shoulda tapped that."
"I know, man!"

HA! Lovvvvvveeee it!

3. Don't Creep. Is there a hotel clerk fantasy that I am unaware of? When I was working for the Park Service I sort of understood all the creeping because there's the whole "women in uniform" thing. But a hotel clerk? Don't get me wrong, flirting can be great and there have definitely been some guys here who have just made my day (like the stairwell boys from #2). Then there are the guys who ask how I "like it." I have gotten that question twice and each time I am offered no explanation. They have asked, " do you like it?" completely out of the blue. I then respond, "Like what?" and the man will just smirk and walk away. I am also getting creeped on via phone quite often and am learning that the whole "Georgia from Georgia" thing is being turned on me as a pick-up line. The most recent incident involving phone-creeping was a man from New Jersey who suddenly asked if I was a blonde. Naturally (and stupidly) and said 'yes' and this led to an inquiry as to whether it was long or short. Upon learning that my hair is shoulder length the man kept asking why I don't grow it out to my elbows and how every man would kill for a blonde with long straight hair, etc, etc. He began asking where I was from, if I ever came up to Jersey (by this point I just began making fabricating stuff), and if other girls in the state of Georgia had long hair or not. I was beginning to think I would have to crinkle paper into the phone or something to make him think the connection was breaking up when he finally said, "So, Georgia, what else can you tell me about yourself?" Finally a segue and I said, "Well the hotel I am working for has a rate of 109 tonight. Were you interested in making a reservation?" That finally shut him up and he said he might come down in the summer, that he hoped I would have long hair by then, and hung-up. What. The. Crap.

4. Being Pleasant Will Get You Many Things. Like I was saying in #1, if you're rude you're likely to miss out on some things because a)I might not offer up certain information and will let you go through the trouble of finding it out yourself or b) I may not put in that extra effort to make sure your stay is stellar. This obviously works both ways and if you ARE nice and polite then you are guaranteed to have a great stay. For example, for pleasant guests I have done such things as performed laptop maintenance, given out meal coupons to various restaurants around the area (ask the front desk clerk the next time you're at a hotel because, if we have them, we don't just offer them up to anybody), helped pick which ball of yarn would make the best scarf for each granddaughter (true story), found driving directions to all sorts of non-local areas, and even spell checked a document. So be nice to your hotel clerks, people! Pleaaaasssseeeee. I promise it will only end up benefiting you as well and you may even get to keep all your power on :)

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