Tip 77: Empower your team to make a less than optimal experience right

Because things sometimes just don’t happen the way you’d like them to, there’s always a chance for recovery to make the situation right (see tips #16 & 17). When people on your team are empowered to make a situation better for your customers on the spot (without having to go and ask someone if it is ok), then everyone wins.


  1. On several occasions, team members from Whole Foods have been able to brighten my day by immediately doing something about a situation that prevented me from “finding everything ok” while shopping.
  2. One night while staying in a hotel (I’ve spent many nights in hotels through the years), the shower wasn’t working properly. When I checked out, I mentioned it to the staff, and she promptly offered me a boatload of loyalty reward points to make up for it. She didn’t have to ask anyone for permission. She just fixed the situation, and left me super delighted with my points.


  1. Give your staff tools with which to make decisions on their own to delight your customers. That means giving them guidance on quick ways to solve your customers’ problems or challenges with your business, so they know just what to do when met with an issue.
  2. Train your team to listen out for, spot, and quickly identify less than optimal customer experiences. By focusing their energy on making sure each of your customers has a delightful experience, they’ll be in a better position to make any less than optimal experience right.

Application for your business

  1. Write down any reasons why you have not empowered people on your team to make a less than optimal experience right with your customer, without having to check in with you first.
  2. For each of those reasons listed, brainstorm three things you can do to increase your comfort level in empowering your employees to delight your customers on the spot.

Previous tips

1-22. Section 1: Build a relationship with your customers (series)

23-48. Section 2: Make your customers’ lives better (series)

49-62. Section 3: Reward your customers (series)

63. Be cool (code for be yourself)

64. Love what you do (and let it show)

65. Give your business some G.A.S.

66. Have awesome people

67. Take care of your awesome people

68. Be remarkable

69. Be memorable

70. Shake things up

71. Be awesome in unexpected small ways

72. Be awesome in unexpected big ways

73. Start a movement

74. Be fearless

75. Tell the story about your product

76. Do mundane tasks in a new, different, and unexpected way