Olympic Caliber Customer Service


The Salt Lake City Olympic Volunteers were the best ever.


People remember how you make them feel. If you make them feel special they will never forget you.

Out of the four Winter Olympics I competed in, the Salt Lake City Olympics were the best. Most athletes that competed in the Salt Lake City Olympics will tell you they agree.

Why were the 2002 Winter Olympics the best?

Because of the 15,000 volunteers that made us feel so welcome and so special.

The volunteers are the lifeblood of the Olympics. They have many different roles – from transporting athletes, serving meals, medical help, welcoming athletes, etc.

The Salt Lake City volunteers were the best trained ever. They would always ask us “How is your Olympic experience?”

That was a great question to ask. Asking that question did two things:

First, it was an open-ended way to ask us how everything was going and
Second, it helped them focus on delivering a great Olympic experience.

I remember gathering with other athletes at the Olympic Village coffee shop and trying to think about what the Volunteers could have done better. We could’t think of anything.

In fact, someone jokingly said that if you kicked a volunteer in the shin, the volunteer would probably thank you for an Olympic bruise. They were THAT nice.

The volunteers made a huge difference. They make us all remember the Salt Lake City Olympics as the best ever.

What are you doing to help your clients, your co-workers, your friends and family feel special?

It doesn’t take much. Just a genuine desire to help improve their experience. A genuine desire to make them feel special. Do that, and people will never forget you.


Make it an Olympic Day!

Ruben Gonzalez



My Favorite Hotel


The Crystal Lodge in Whistler – www.Crystal-Lodge.com

As a professional speaker, I’m on the road all the time. I stay at about 50 different hotels every year. At first, they all seem really nice but after a while they all feel pretty much the same. Most of the time the rooms are really nice and the service is OK.

That’s why I was so pleasantly surprised when I stayed at the Crystal Lodge Hotel in Whistler, British Columbia last November. I was in Whistler for luge training at the Olympic track and booked the Crystal Lodge out of the internet.

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Bose Knows Customer Service


I travel so much that a couple of years ago I bit the bullet and got myself a $300 Bose noise canceling headset. The sound is great, and every time there’s a baby crying in my plane, I’m glad I bought them.

Last week, a small plastic piece that helps hold the headset in place broke. I thought to myself, “Bose will probably charge me $50 to replace this $0.05 piece of plastic.”

I wasn’t too happy.

I took my headset to the local Bose dealer and was blown away by what they did. The Bose employee (he wasn’t even the store manager) just smiled and said, “Bose likes to take care of out customers.” And he handed me a brand-spanking-new $300 headset!

In an instant Bose turned an annoyed customer into someone who will give them positive word of mouth advertising for years.

Next time one of your customers is not happy with your product or service, you have the opportunity to turn them into a lifelong fan. It all comes down to how you handle it!


Olympic Motivational Speaker Ruben Gonzalez


Why Customers Quit

1% die
3% move away
5% develop new friendships
9% for competitive reasons
14% product dissatisfaction
68% quit because of an attitude of indifference
toward the customer by some employee
Remember, no matter what you do, YOU are in the PEOPLE Business!


Olympic Motivational Speaker Ruben Gonzalez


Cancun, the Moon Palace Resort and Customer Service


Fun in the sun in Cancun

I was just in Cancun where I got to speak at a leadership for Evolution International, a fitness and wellness company based in Phoenix.

The Moon Palace is a huge resort (2000 rooms). It boasts having the largest pool in Mexico. The place was nearly deserted because last year they got hit by a hurricane and people are scared to come back during hurricane season. Give it a couple of years and they’ll be back.

The service was outstanding. I’ve never been greeted so many times in my life. EVERYONE, down to the maintenance people, gives you a sincere, genuine smile and wishes you a great day. They had to be the best trained staff of anywhere I’ve ever stayed. The best part was they were genuinely glad to have the opportunity to serve us.

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