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Friday, June 15, 2012

Golf and Customer Service - De Vere - Oh Dear!

Having just returned from an extended trip to the UK, it gave me the opportunity to see how golf service levels were on the other side of the Pond. You can read about the majority of the trip at Golf Purist here. There was one more round to play with my Dad, brother and nephew before heading home to D.C. and that was at a typical semi private club in the middle of the country. The club, Belton Woods is near Grantham, Lincolnshire and is owned and operated by De Vere Hotels. The round reminded me of the great Seinfeld episode with the rental car - remember the one where Jerry says "You can take the reservation, but you can't hold the reservation". We teed off as planned at 0720 on the Lakes Course and all was proceeding well until our game was rudely interrupted by an officious guy saying "You shouldn't be on this course - your reservation was on the other course". We told him when and on which course the reservation was made and he said and I quote "That's impossible, the tee was blocked off for a competition from 0700". Really, so the 2 groups in front of us were also making it up were they?  I would note we were in position and keeping well in front of the group behind us. So Mr. Obnoxious drove off, clearly not happy. Amazingly, he returned 2 holes later to continue to harang us with the same story and this time was even more vociferous in his defence of the computer booking system (which couldn't possibly be wrong!).
Anyway, thanks De Vere and your rude, inefficient (and incorrect) staff for ruining our golf game. If this is your way of dealing with paying customers, it's little wonder rounds are down! Suggestion of the day - Get a copy of Six Sigma and pass it around!