What an Atlanta Airport Bathroom Visit Taught Me About Customer Service
On Monday I had a layover in the Atlanta airport. I don’t usually fly through ATL—mostly because I am a Southwest loyalist—but when I do I am repeatedly impressed by the airport’s amenities.
If I’m passing through in the evening, I’ll head over to terminal E and visit One Flew South—a classy joint for specialty cocktails and, better than that, unforgettable customer service. In general, it’s rare to get quality service of any kind in an airport. But in Atlanta, I’ve come to expect it.
Still, I was taken aback by the warm greeting I received as I entered a restroom (yes, a restroom) near my departure gate.
“Hi there, mister! Welcome to Larry’s bathroom!” said a man standing next to a tall cart stacked with cleaning supplies and paper products.
“Hi. Um. Thanks,” was all I could muster.
“Come on in, take a load off, maybe leave one behind,” he said with a smile. Which made the teenager in me chuckle a bit.
He went on, greeting every man who entered, his voice echoing poetic quips through the bathroom chambers.
“Just you wait and see, this is the best place to pee.”
“Ain’t gotta rush, but when you’re done, please flush.”
“Now – to everyone in the stalls…let us pray: dear God, please let everything come out OK.”
To which someone shouted, “Amen!”
The enthusiastic greetings continued. “Welcome to Larry’s bathroom! Welcome to Larry’s bathroom!” And when I looked side to side at other guys using urinals, they, like me, were cracking up.
We all were having a fun experience. In an Atlanta airport bathroom.
As I washed my hands, I heard Larry say, “We aim to please. You aim too…please.” I looked over at him, we made eye contact, and he shook his head and shrugged his shoulders.
“Everyone was waiting for that one, weren’t they?” he said.
“Honestly, I expected it sooner,” I said back.
“I know, I know. Old school, huh?”
“No doubt. Super old school.”
I said goodbye and he said, “Hasta luego, mister. Come again, tell a friend!”
Then he chided the guy behind me, “Hey there globetrotter, how ‘bout some soap and water?”
I swear I’ve told 100 people about Larry so far. Doesn’t take much for a good experience to go viral. Even if it happens in the bathroom.
Tom Griffen is a highly sought after trainer and presenter whose message transcends industries. He’ll help you raise the bar while you reinvent your business.