What’s “The Norm” in Customer Service?

What’s “The Norm” in Customer Service?

Do I really have to say it? Really am I going to have to start the blog off with the obvious? OK…Fine…


There, better? I know, I know, it’s hard to resist when you see a picture of George Wendt, who brilliantly portrayed Norm Peterson on “Cheers”. He inspires us to cry out his name when he burst through the door to the Cheers Bar, just like guests in our businesses get greeted by our customer service reps when they enter our place of business right?

Wrong, sadly a good deal of the time, oiu? So I submit to you that should not every guest get the “Norm” treatment when they commit to choosing your place of business? Should that kind of welcome/welcome back be “The Norm”?

Norm, and his chums at Cheers returned every episode not just because they had a contract to do the show, they returned because of the philosophy of what Cheers stood for: A place where everybody knows your name. They had a comfort in the reception and the experience they receive when they enter your doors. They have “The Norm.”

Watch this for an example of what I’m talking about for the next 1 min 11 seconds…

Every time Norm enters, he has the same awesome experience. Now note the experience Shelly Longs character Diane had at the end of the video when she entered Cheers? She felt robbed. There for its imperative that every guest has the same but unique welcoming experience when they come in.

You can even encourage them by starting a name game where you challenge them to learn the names of all their regulars. The team member that pockets the most names is given a reward!

Encourage your customer service teams to embrace “The Norm”. The “Norm” principle of course. Don’t ever be “normal”. Let your freak flag fly! But that’s another blog…

And So it Goes…

1 Comment

  1. A good rule of thumb for sure. However, proceed with caution for if you remember, Norm racked up quite an unpaid bill which I believe was kept in a three-ring binder and resembled a telephone book in thickness. 🙂 Cheers!

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Who Is Ty Sullivan?

Ty Sullivan is the Director of Marketing and Social Media for one of New York City's top restaurant management groups. He also speaks, teaches and designs Customer Service seminars as well as blogs on the subject.

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