www.stevesavage.com ι November 2009

This weekend I stayed at a hotel booked by Expedia.com. I booked it for two nights a few weeks ago. But a few days before my trip, plans changed. I had to leave after one night.

No problem?

Wrong! Big problem!

The two nights had already been charged to my credit card. I called Expedia a few days before the trip to tell them I would be there for one night instead of two. They said I would have to talk to the hotel manager and get his or her approval. Then Expedia would have to talk with the manager before they could issue me credit.

Bureaucracy! This already went against the basic Savage Strategy “Make it easy to do business with your company.” But it was gonna get worse!

I checked in and told the front desk clerk I would be there one night instead of two. I told her Expedia would like to call the manager. She said fine. She would handle it.

I got to my room and called Expedia. The woman was very nice, but told me to wait on hold while she talked with the hotel manager. Five minutes later she came back and said the manager had approved it.

I said, “Great!” I thought we were done.

Wrong! We were not finished!

Now she had to talk to her supervisor! She put me on hold for another five minutes. Then she came back and told me she was going to give me credit for one night.

The decision was fine. I got my credit. But I was annoyed and decided not to do business with Expedia again.

It could have been so easy. Expedia should drive decisions down. They should have allowed the very first person I called to issue me that credit - immediately. It would have saved them time and money. It would have made me a happy customer.

Remember these two Savage principles:

  1. Make it easy to do business with your company.
  2. Drive decisions down to the person who is dealing with the customer.

© Copyright 2009, Stephen Savage