Lessons in Superior Customer Service: Kartchner Caverns State Park

I recently took the hour drive from Tucson to Benson, Arizona to enjoy my second visit to Kartchner Caverns. This trip was a lesson in providing superior customer service.

(Full Disclosure: I am acquainted with a grandson of the Kartchners as well as several members of their extended family.)

The caves are still "living" in the sense that calcite formations continue to form and grow. You may even be lightly struck by a "cave kiss", a drop of mineral-rich water, during your visit. Also, the caves are a summer home to a colony of bats.

The Park came to be because of the cooperation among the original discoverers of the caves, the Kartchner family, and the State of Arizona. Here is a link to the park's history. As a result of vision and this cooperation, the delicate ecosystem of Kartchner Caverns is preserved, while simultaneously, thousands of visitors are able to enjoy this geological wonder each year.

Here are just a few examples of superior customer service at Kartchner Caverns:

  • It is easy to purchase tickets for a given tour, either online or via telephone.
  • You are encouraged to arrive one hour before your tour start time. (This is so that people like me who arrive "late" (less than 60 minutes before tour time) can still make their tour.)
  • The front desk is well staffed with friendly people ready to assist you.
  • There is a video presentation before the start of your tour. (This is also so that people like me who arrive "late" can still make their tour. Hint: You can see the video presentation AFTER the tour if necessary.)
  • The rules you must follow are carefully explained.
  • Both tours are 100% wheelchair accessible (This is quite an engineering feat.)
  • The tour guides clearly enjoy what they do.

Another example of superior customer service is found at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson. Where else can you find a world-renowned zoo/natural history museum/botanical garden open 365 days a year that dispenses free sunscreen (SPF 30)?

The key to providing superior customer service is in knowing your customer's needs better than your customer knows them.