The world of hospitality is fertile ground for ideas to enhance the patient experience. Searching online for a place to stay in Hollywood, I stumbled upon the Prospect, a boutique hotel in the heart of Los Angeles. The online reviews were excellent, mentioning the personal service and being upgraded to a nicer room. The photographs conveyed a nice environment. So we booked it. I had also called to let them know it was a wedding anniversary getaway and was asked to call again in the morning on the day of our arrival.
As instructed, I called before boarding our flight and was told “sorry, we are fully booked and can’t do an upgrade.” Disappointing, but nothing those of us who travel haven’t heard before. I let it go.
As we entered, we were greeted warmly in what felt more like a living room than a lobby. As the employee was validating our information, he looked up and said, “Happy Anniversary! We’ve put you in our nicest room.” The manager was standing nearby and apologized for not telling the truth when I called. It was hilarious, giving my wife a good chuckle at the gotcha moment served up to her customer experience-obsessed husband. This was surprise and delight at its best.
The walk through the courtyard with our luggage revealed that each of the rooms had a front-door placard naming a famous Hollywood star, a nice element of theming to reinforce the locality.
The manager took the time to explain the features of our room, where a bottle of champagne awaited (an unexpected nice touch), reinforcing the goal to under-promise and over-deliver.
With rain forecast for an evening outdoor concert, he anticipated a need to call the venue to confirm they provided ponchos…without my asking. The entire stay was exceptional. It was clear that they wanted the level of service to mirror the lovely physical environment.
The hotel experience had been so much more personal and unique compared with the Marriott we had just stayed at the previous two nights on this trip to two cities. On the way home from the airport, I immediately posted a review. No one at the hotel asked me to do so, and there were no signs or messages asking me to like or follow.
Yes, the Prospect Hollywood was more expensive than the Renaissance, W, or other higher-end chain hotels. But that premium, along with the extra money we spent at the property, was forgotten in the midst of the experience. It was John DiJulius’ mantra come to life: customer service so outstanding that it makes price irrelevant.
Go back and review the bolded phrases above. Every one of those insights can be embedded into your medical practice to make the experience for your patients more personal and meaningful. The Prospect can’t compete with the big chains in terms of advertising or marketing. They have realized that they don’t need to in order to build a loyal following. And so should you as you venture on in your own PX Movement.