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Letter to praise good customer service?
May 7, 2013 11:38 AM   Subscribe

I'm looking for a form letter that I can use to send to managers of shops when I've been provided with good customer service. Ideally, I'm looking for something that I can just edit the small details of, like the individual's name, what they did that warranted the letter, etc. Also, if you were a shop worker's manager, what would you really like to know/read in this kind of letter?
posted by Solomon to Writing & Language (10 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
 
I'll be honest, I think a form letter is going to be more trouble than it's worth. A good letter for something like this would be just a couple of sentences, saying when you were in the shop, how the person helped you and with what, and that you are very pleased. Managers want the feedback, but don't have time for anything more. If the situation is more complex, it won't be covered by a form letter anyway.
posted by OmieWise at 11:47 AM on May 7, 2013 [9 favorites]


I think that a letter to a manager about good customer service is going to require something different than a form letter. Here's what I'd expect:

1. Your name
2. The date you experienced good service
3. The name of the person who gave good service (if known)
4. The reason why this service was better-than-expected
5. A way to get back in touch for follow-up

It doesn't need to be even especially well-written. Letters of commendation are so rare that just the barest details are enough for good employees to be recognized.
posted by xingcat at 11:47 AM on May 7, 2013


If you plan to change the small details like the name and what they did to warrant the letter, um...what else is there?

I send emails like this all the time. They go about like this.

Dear [company],

I was in your [street name or something] location on [date] and while I was there I was helped by [name]. S/he was fantastic and [helped me find the whatsit] and [answered all my stupid questions about the whatsit]. Because of [name] and her/his rockin' customer service, I'll definitely be coming back to [company] in the future.

Thank you!!
-phunniemee


Doesn't really seem like the kind of thing you need a form letter for, unless there's something specific you've left out?

(I also often ask the person who's helped me if they can point me toward their manager before I leave the store, where I gush at them about how helpful they were with the whatsit. This tends to go over really well.)
posted by phunniemee at 11:48 AM on May 7, 2013 [4 favorites]


Depending on whether it's locally owned or corporate, they may have a mechanism for leaving feedback on employee performances through their customer service line. We have the most wonderfully helpful and friendly CVS employees that we've commended using this before.

But if you do do a letter, I think describing the qualities that the employee exhibited and why it would make you want to come back to the store (presumably the manager/owner's ultimate care) could have the best impact for the employee. I'm not a shop owner though.
posted by SpicyMustard at 11:48 AM on May 7, 2013


I also often ask the person who's helped me if they can point me toward their manager before I leave the store, where I gush at them about how helpful they were with the whatsit. This tends to go over really well.

I do this as well. I usually tell the employee how I was really pleased with their service, and that I very much would like to speak to their manager to make sure they are aware of the quality service they are providing. Much more direct and timely, the employee is aware of the positive feedback, the manager knows immediately, and everyone is happy. I have been places where positive feedback like this doesn't get forwarded on to the employee that earned it. I have been places where the manager just shrugged and sort of filed away any positive feedback on employees and just went about their day. Telling the employee directly and then telling the manager directly basically avoids that.
posted by PuppetMcSockerson at 12:17 PM on May 7, 2013


I usually just gush to the manager in person. If there are comment cards, I'll fill one out.

That letter thing, you'd be amazed at how few people are even checking the snail mail anymore.

If there's a website, comment there, but the easiest thing to do is just mention your positive experience with the manager on duty and leave it at that.
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 12:19 PM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Also, if you were a shop worker's manager, what would you really like to know/read in this kind of letter?

Details. It's nice that my employee left you with a good feeling, but how? Did he solve a problem that you walked into the store with? Did she spend extra time with you to make sure you were getting the right product/service? Etc. It's fine to pull the manager aside in person or via letter to say, "Sally did a great job," but it'll go farther if you can tell me, "Sally was attentive to refilling our drinks," or "Tim cautioned me against buying a more expensive item that would have been a poor fit."

I'm looking for something that I can just edit the small details of, like the individual's name, what they did that warranted the letter, etc.

How long are you imagining this letter to be? The parts you're proposing to edit are pretty much the only parts that you should include. That's reason #1 why a form letter doesn't make much sense here. Reason #2 is that form letters read like form letters. You've had the experience of receiving form letters, right? Junk mail, fundraising solicitations, etc. Don't you recognize them immediately for what they are? How closely do you read them? Now put yourself in the owner/manager's shoes.

I think letters are an excellent medium. For the circumstance you're describing I'll usually just say something in person to the owner/manager, but letters are fine, too. Snail mail carries much more weight (no pun intended) than email, a website's comment box, etc. But it seems like you're envisioning a letter that's several paragraphs long. That's probably overboard. Even a postcard is sufficient.
posted by cribcage at 12:39 PM on May 7, 2013


these days i just send a handwritten postcard. i fit about 3-4 sentence in and that's it. that's all people have time for anymore and i like to envision maybe it gets hung up on the breakroom bulletin board for a few days if there is one (cause my postcards are HILARIOUS).
posted by misanthropicsarah at 1:23 PM on May 7, 2013 [1 favorite]


Honestly, the simpler it is the better: just the existence of a message of gratitude from a customer makes the thing into a talisman.

When I have written notes like this, it's the fewest sentences possible to explain the circumstances (ideally so the employee can be praised), plus a statement of my intense joy and impatience to return. Sometimes I add a vow to tell my friends, too.

Good on you for doing this!
posted by wenestvedt at 7:01 PM on May 7, 2013


As a store manager, I would love to get a postcard in the mail from a happy customer. So often you only ever get written complaints, something praising one of my staff would be slapped up on a wall in the staff room as a reminder that good service is always appreciated.

A form letter is going to seem a bit...underwhelming, but a handwritten card would make my day. Make sure you say when you were it, and give a physical description if you can't get a name (a name of some sort should be on your receipt, but if you lose it or was well served without buying anything a description is good). Let us know what you loved.

Of course, I work at a smaller chain without what you'd call a "corporate" office, so a form letter may go over better at a larger store.
posted by Jilder at 8:04 AM on May 8, 2013


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