Moments of Truth: The LaLit, Mumbai

Research shows that 82% of the people stop doing businesses with companies due to poor Customer Experience.

I had been to The Lalit, Mumbai in the last week of Dec 2019 along with my family. The property is great and so are the people, but do they have the “X” factor in creating a world-class experience for their customers? Sadly, No!

Their Moments of Truth often turned into Moments of Misery for us. Moments of Truth are an important aspect of the customer experience journey and organizations need to be obsessive about creating world class experiences for their customers.

In Customer Experience (CX) Management, Moments of Truth represent the points in a customer’s journey with a brand when a key event occurs and an opinion about that brand is formed. (Ref). Moments of Misery refer to interactions that have gone from bad to worse.

What happened at The LaLit, Mumbai?

Check-in counter (Moment of Misery # 1)

For hotels, check-in counters are one of the most important touchpoints for creating a great experience. Their staff was courteous but focused on their robotic processes rather than on the customers. We had to wait at the check-in counter for 10 mins just to handover our identity proofs. The lady at the counter  chose to focus on completing the data entry work instead of attending to us. All she had to do was to keep her robotic process aside and attend to us and other guests. She could have also asked her other colleagues to help her out.

24 x 7 Café (Moment of Misery # 2)

I can imagine a delay of 20-25 mins in getting your food order but your drinks order getting delayed by 40 mins is unheard of. The staff at the café looked disinterested and at times were busy playing the ‘blame game’. One guy got us a can of coke but forgot to get alcohol. When asked him about the missing stuff – he looked puzzled and took the can of coke away (I don’t know why he did that!). Another guy came in with the entire order (coke cans, whisky, beer bottles, etc.) after 15 mins. So technically our order was delayed by 45 mins. They did not even bother apologizing for the delay.

Queen-size bed (Moment of Misery # 3)

The rooms are spacious and well stocked (I hope you know what I mean.)! We were having our evening snacks and playing with my 8 month old niece when suddenly one the wheel castors from the bed frame came off. Luckily no one was hurt. We called up the reception asking them to send someone to get the bed frame fixed. The maintenance guy came and told us that it cannot be fixed. I handed him my card and asked him to give it to his Manager. I also told him that I was a Customer Experience Consultant and I post detailed reviews on my blog and TripAdvisor. The Managers were in our room within 5 mins (the perks of being a CX Consultant) and offered to get the room changed. We politely declined the offer and asked them to get our bed fixed. If only, they had focused on getting it fixed in the first interaction itself.

Why did this happen?

This happens when your employee engagement practices are not in sync with your customer experience practices. Quite a few companies who fail to engage their employees often face issues with retaining their customers due to poor CX. You may want to read reviews of companies on Glassdoor (reviews posted by employees) and then compare those with the reviews posted by customers on Trust Pilot (or similar websites). There are very few organizations in INDIA who believe in the magic of creating exceptional CX through effective EX (Employee Experience) strategies. Please note that, I am unaware of the EX strategies followed by The LaLit and hence not commenting on that.

Will I go back to The LaLit in the future? I don’t think so. I am a fan of exceptional experiences and if any hotel/restaurant or service provider fails to deliver it – then I STOP doing business with them! Let’s just say that I fall under 82% of the population 🙂

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