~ The Service Professionals Resource ~ 
February 4, 2015 
Volume 11, Issue 2                                                                                                          $3.95
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Publication Data
Mark Matteson publishes his Sparking Success EZine Street newsletter on the first Wednesday of every month. The next newsletter will go out on March 4, 2015

A simple choice
Freedom From Fear Forever

freedom from fear
Freedom From Fear Audio CD
Audio CDs
Sales Success Stories
Mark Matteson gives over 75 presentations each year. Book him now to secure the inspiring message that will spark your group's success! To watch Mark's demo video, go to: www.sparkingsuccess.net. Call 206.697.0454 or e-mail him at mark.enjoythejourney.matteson@gmail.com.


Things Don't Just Happen, They Happen Just!

by Mark Matteson

I am writing this on a flight to Atlanta after my first cruise ship excursion, as an adult, to Nassau, Bahamas on Norwegian Cruise Line's Norwegian Sky. From stem to stern, soup to nuts, it was a fantastic experience. It was one customer service "wow" after another. With festive, modern dance music blaring, guests were greeted by positive, smiling twenty-somethings-modern day Gatsbys-who danced and waved to their new guests at every turn. There were understanding and empathetic stewards directing traffic and caring, extra-mile housekeepers who asked if there was anything they could do. It was surreal. Norwegian is the Nordstrom of cruise lines. Maybe it isn't the Ritz-Carlton, but, hey, this was a speaking gig and my client chose this particular company. (Thank you and well done, Ingrid and Joe!)


With 2,000 passengers and 12 decks, this was a floating modern city with all the amenities. Near the end of my voyage, I had to book a last-minute hotel room. Jenny took great care of me as we sat in her office to finalize details. I glanced up to see several things on the wall that caught my eye. The first was a pennant that read simply, Norwegians are passionate about service! The second was their mission statement, which I read with interest, and a poster entitled "Vacation Hero" with "31 Daily Tips". This last was a kind of calendar of reminders as to how act or treat guests. I can say from experience they supported the mission statement. Here it is, submitted for your approval:


Mission Statement

"To provide a consistently superior cruise vacation by exceeding customer expectations and embracing our passion for innovation that delivers freedom and value for our guests, travel partners, team members and shareholders."


Well, in my humble opinion and experience, they accomplished all that and more.


Now to those "31 Daily Tips." They are short, sweet, and easy to remember. My guess is the idea behind the application is simple: on the first day of January, they focus on #1, on January 2, they focus on #2, and so on, and repeat each month. By year's end, they have focused on each one 12 times. It's a simple system of repetition and change for the good. At least, that is what I would stress if they ever let me be captain (like THAT's gonna' happen)!


31 Daily Tips to Create a Vacation Hero 

  1. Make a Positive First Impression
  2. Follow the 5' & 10' Rule
  3. Personalize Service
  4. Smile
  5. Meet, Great, Repeat
  6. Lend a Helping Hand
  7. Quiet please!
  8. Consistency
  9. Be Aware of Surroundings
  10. Proactive, Engaging Service
  11. Lead the Way
  12. Guest First
  13. Service Sells
  14. Up-Sell
  15. Understand the Needs of the Guest
  16. Follow Through on Guest Requests
  17. Be a Problem Solver
  18. Take 100% Personal Responsibility
  19. Positive Attitude
  20. Flexibility
  21. Be Proud and Enjoy the Job
  22. Friendly Tone of Voice
  23. Respect Others
  24. Make Guests Feel Special
  25. Smiling Body Language
  26. Communicate Easily and Clearly
  27. Be Tactful
  28. Be a Norwegian Ambassador
  29. Values and Integrity
  30. Take Care of Yourself
  31. Make it Happen!

 As I sat there reading those 31 Daily Tips, I thought to myself, "Things don't just happen, they happen just."


When I disembarked, looking forlorn and sad, I recalled what the cruise director had said, "You don't have to cook! You don't have to do the dishes! You don't even have to make your bed!" I noticed many of the passengers were getting back on the ship in a kind of conga line with Norwegian employees forming a positive gauntlet of loud music, clapping, and singing. It was a "Welcome back on board Wow!" A Disney cruise ship was anchored parallel to the Norwegian Sky and an equal number of people were getting back on board her. The Disney passengers looked jealous. They looked like they wished they were getting on our ship. Norwegian out-serviced Disney!


What are you doing to Wow! your customers?


What kind of system of imparting vital values, behaviors, and attitudes do you employ for your team, associates, or direct reports?


What kind of attitudes and behavior are you rewarding and why?


Take a page from the Norwegian Sky. All aboard!


The purpose of business is to GET and KEEP customers.

-Theodore Levitt, author of The Marketing Imagination


Your customers might forget what you SAY, they may even forget what you DO, but they will always remember how you made them FEEL!

-Mark Matteson, author, speaker, and consultant


The only thing that matters is a satisfied customer. That means putting the customer first in everything we do.

-Jan Carlzon, former CEO, Scandinavian Airlines

 Mark Matteson gives over 75 presentations each year. Book him now to secure the inspiring message that will spark your group's success! To watch Mark's demo video, go to: www.sparkingsuccess.net. Call 206.697.0454 or e-mail him at mark.enjoythejourney.matteson@gmail.com. 

Book of the Month
SHRED: The Revolutionary Diet
By Ian K. Smith, M.D.

Going on a cruise this spring? Have a reunion to attend this summer? A wedding to participate in this fall? Need to lose 20 pounds in a month in a healthy way? Try reading Ian K. Smith's book.

I picked this book up in an airport bookstore in Phoenix and read it twice that day. It's a paradigm buster. Here are some ideas from it.

> This is a "Healthy Way to Lose Weight" book, promising four inches or 20 pounds in six weeks. (Most experts suggest one pound a week is safe and proven.)

> He calls it "Destination Dieting" and it's meant as a short-term strategy.

>He teaches "Three Critical Elements" as to why this works: 

  1. Negative Energy Balance - Simply put, the body burns carbohydrates first, then fat, and finally muscle. This system attacks the first two.
  2. Calorie Disruption - Like cross-training, mixing up your workouts confuses the muscles and forces them to grow. It's the same principle with weight loss. Changing portions and content keeps your metabolism searching.
  3. Sliding Nutrient Density - Mixing meat and plants in a creative and unique approach, and delimiting heavy meats, cream sauces, and carb-rich foods, your body gets only what it needs for nutrients.

>Exercise is a part of the system, mostly cardio, focusing on high-intensity interval training, which, by the way, works. He also sells HIS 27-minute DVD, food bars, and popcorn.

>He encourages you to continue to do whatever OTHER workouts you do and is flexible in his approach and advice.

>This is NOT shallow-end-of-the-pool, gradual "lose slowly" approach. It's not for everyone. Having said that, I'm trying it for four weeks.

I will keep you posted. I discovered this just in time, as I have scheduled in 2015 another cruise, a reunion, and a wedding! Can I have some more kale? 

To order my new e-book, You Don't Have To Be Sick To Get Better, go to http://sparkingsuccess.net/store/

Now Available on Kindle at Amazon.com.


Mark resides in Edmonds, Washington and takes great pride in the fact he flunked high school English. To watch Markʼs demo video, go to: www.sparkingsuccess.net


Mark Matteson gives over 75 presentations each year. Book him now to secure the inspiring message that will spark your group's success! To watch Mark's demo video, go to:www.sparkingsuccess.net. Call 206.697.0454 or e-mail him atmark.enjoythejourney.matteson@gmail.com.