Consider both a good and a bad retail service experience you have recently had – a haircut, doctor’s appointment, dinner in a restaurant, bank transaction, product repair, etc – and answer the following questions. Describe the excellent service delivery experience. What made this quality experience possible? Describe the service delivery experience in which you did not receive the performance that you expected. What were the problems encountered, and how could they have been resolved?


Recently I had a great retail service experience involving a local wine shop down the street. While my wife searched for the bottle that she wanted, I killed time by hanging out in the Scotch section. After a few seconds of looking around I was approached by one of the store’s employees. He asked me what kind of scotch I wanted and I told him that I had no idea. I mentioned to him that I’ve tried it before and liked it but I couldn’t remember the brand or type. For the next five plus minutes the guy proceeded to tell me all about scotch; the different types, different regions of Scotland that it comes from, the impact that the water source has on the flavor, along with the difference between single malt and double malt. I couldn’t believe it. For a liquor store worker, this guy was incredibly passionate about his products. I was truly surprised by how much he knew about scotch and also by how much effort he was pouring into helping a random customer. If I had had more than zero intentions of buying an eighty dollar bottle of Scotch, I would’ve strongly considered it. Even so, my wife and I felt appreciated by the staff and said that we would gladly return in the future.

One negative retail experience that took place recently was at a restaurant up in Glennwood Springs. In short, our server was terrible. I’m not sure if she had something against out-of-towners or what but she seemed to have despised us. She didn’t look any of us in the eye and never cracked one smile. This would’ve all made sense had we been rude or disrespectful but our group had been quiet and polite the whole time. I remember feeling a bit confused. Why would somebody choose a job that required you to serve people, when you don’t even like people? Granted, she may have been having a bad day. Who knows what was really going on. All I can say was that the service was terrible and our waitress was possibly the least friendly server I’ve ever seen. Overall it wasn’t so much a problem for us as it was for the restaurant. The food itself was delicious. Had the server been friendly, we would’ve associated the good food with the good service and walked away with a good impression of the restaurant. Unfortunately, the bad service overpowered the good food. This left us associating the restaurant with negative feelings as we climbed back into the car for the drive home.