Throw 'em a bone (guest compliments)

Thursday, October 24, 2002 12:01 AM

In addition to giving complaints, how many buzzers regularly give compliments at a park's guest relations department? They're a good gesture, and one that is often overlooked by regular parkgoers and enthusiasts. By letting the park know how's doing a good job, you let the park know where they are doing well--and enchance that employee's chance of promotion so they can possibly instill some of their good work into fellow employees.

Each time I visit a theme park I make sure to leave compliments of what I see that's good about a park. This summer at IOA, USF, and BGT i filled out the form and made sure some employees got a pat on the back. I didn't get anything free, and I didn't expect to. But those that you extend thanks to will certainly appreciate it!

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the member formerly known as MisterX

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:06 AM
A friend once told the people at the admin office at Knoebels about having had a great day at the park. The person she talked to thanked her and then said that it great to hear a compliment for a change rather than a complaint. I had trouble believing that anyone would have any complaints about Knoebels.
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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:15 AM

Something else: being a ride op is one of the most

THANKLESS JOBS IN THE WORLD

Don't just give Guest relations a compliment! Give it to the people who are actually doing a good job! In even the most poorly of run parks, there will be at least one enthusiast in there making a difference, busting his ass everyday, hoping it will rub off on everybody else. Find that person, or people, tell them how great you think they are, get their name and ride, AND THEN tell guest relations. I know it seems like a lot of trouble, but to people who work at parks, seriously, something like that means more than anything. You will make their day, probably their week.

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If the shoe fits, find another one.

*** This post was edited by ravenguy98 on 10/24/2002. ***

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:20 AM
I disagree Ravenguy. The majority of the guests are very friendly at Six Flags here in Ohio... it's up to you as the employee, however to start the line of communication with a quick: "Have Fun!" or "How was it?", after which, most will reply with some enthusiasm and thank me when they leave.

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:34 AM

So if you see somebody doing a good job you shouldn't tell them you think they're doing a good job?

Huh?

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If the shoe fits, find another one.

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:41 AM
No, I was saying that alot of the Guests do, in fact, thank me.

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Jes
Jes's Roller Coasters DJ Jes
Six Flags Worlds Of Adventure 2002 Ride-Ops Crew (Have Fun Trying To Find Me!)

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:44 AM
Then how are you disagreeing with me?

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If the shoe fits, find another one.

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 4:51 AM
I thought you said that being a ride-op is one of the most thankless jobs in the world, I guess I misunderstood what you meant.

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 5:00 AM

Oh ok. I do think its one of the most thankless jobs in the world. That's why I said it. I didn't understand you were adressing that part of my statement. Sorry.

To clarify the thankless bit: its hard working 60 hours a week, in the hot sun, in the freezing cold, picking up trash at 1 o'clock in the morning, dealing with irate parents, with loud, whiny little kids, getting 5 hours of sleep at night, and then getting paid $6.85 an hour on your paycheck. Anything positive you can say to your local ride attendant or op is going to be much appreciated.

That's all I was saying. *shrug*

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If the shoe fits, find another one.

*** This post was edited by ravenguy98 on 10/24/2002. ***

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 5:34 AM
Some parks have places on their web sites to make comments. I always try to thank them for a great time and make suggestions on how they could improve the park.

----------------- That is a good idea to thank the ride ops when you get on or off of a ride. Don't forget the sweepers and other park personnel when you run into them.
There is a new twist in the Top-Hat.

*** This post was edited by CP ismyhome on 10/24/2002. ***

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 5:59 AM
We (whom ever I'm with) always make it a point to the thank the ride ops when they give us last rides of the night. They must be exhausted by that point.
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Dude, you're getting an Intamin!
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Thursday, October 24, 2002 8:49 AM

I always tell a ride op if I think they are doing a wonderful job. There are many crews that are doing wonderful jobs this year.

Boomerang crew @ WOF - man can they run this thing at max ppf. So much faster loading times than most rides of this type (and the fact they are faster than TWolf's crew is awesome).

Son of Beast @ PKI - I can't believe how fast they can load trains. And they are so chipper.

Titan @ SFoT - Friendly people, loved talking to them about the differences between Titan and Goliath -very knowledgable (which is surprising that they know so much stuff about both rides - and it's accurate).

Superman Krypton Coaster @ SFFT - even with the double rides during Spring Breakout, the line was never a very long wait (even with it out into the midway).

All crews @ Adventureland - so friendly, and they have no problems with "ride agains" if there are empty seats.

All crews @ Silver Dollar City - man can this park run max ppf on EVERYTHING. Watch out Cedar Point, I think you've met your match.

There are more but my fingers are getting tired of typing. I think in general most parks I went to had/have very good crews this year - with the exception of a few. You always have a black sheep somewhere. :)

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SWOOSH
http://www.themeparksonline.org
(In cyberspace no one can hear you scream)

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 9:02 AM
I don't generally stop by the PR department, but I do try to complement individual employees when they are doing a good job. Also, if a park is doing well, I try to say so in trip reports here.
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Thursday, October 24, 2002 9:30 AM

Ravenguy - this is not directed at you personally.

Its not called "customer service" for nothing. In addition to running the ride, you are the park's "customer service rep" as you, and those working in food ops and clean-up, have the most contact with park guests.

As a "CS rep" you're gonna run into a grumpy park guest, and it takes talent, quick thinking, and compassion to turn their bad experience into a good one. It's called "going the extra mile."

Yes, it may be thankless but that doesn't mean people don't appreciate a good attitude and smile, even if they don't say so to you or Guest Relations. I've seen many ride ops who acted as if they wished they could be anywhere but at work, and it really affects how I view a park experience. Anyone who doesn't like working with the public should not take a job as a ride op!

Perhaps that's why parks such as Knoebels and Holiday World are so fun to visit? The employees look like they're having just as much fun and take a lot of pride in their job.

Moosh

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Coaster & Amusement Park Christmas Cards and Merchandise...coming soon! Details in new sig any day now!

*** This post was edited by Mamoosh on 10/24/2002. ***

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 10:02 AM

Mamoosh said:

Ravenguy - this is not directed at you personally.



I agree with everything you say 100%. Maybe I'm just being dense, but all I was saying is that working at a park is hard. And you should compliment those who are doing a good job at it.

Am I giving some other impression?

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If the shoe fits, find another one.

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 10:14 AM

Here's a story:

I know this girl, and she is the sweetest person I have met in my life. She's a junior in High School and she wants to be a nurse if she can afford to go to college. She also has a hard time standing up for herself, so a lot of the time she is stuck operating rides that are physically demanding, or extremely boring, or have no shade, etc... I couldn't do anything about it because I worked in a division on the other side of the park we worked at. She also worked sometimes open to close 6 days a week, simply because she was asked to, and she just about always cleaned for at least an hour after park closing, no matter what the weather was like, no matter how her day had been.

Towards the end of the summer, she sat down next to me at dinner, and told me how this woman with her kid came up to her and told her that she that the she ran a wonderful ride, and that her day had been horrible up until she told her child to have a nice day at the end of the ride.

She ended up crying there in the cafeteria because it meant so much to her, and so few people had said anything nice to her all season, no matter how hard she tried. It meant THAT MUCH to her, and no matter how much she got used for the rest of the season, she still didn't let it get her down. She kept on saying "Bye!" to the kids as they left her ride, no matter how she felt. Just because she knew that some people really do appreciate people doing a good job, and some people are actually nice enough to stop and talk to her on the way out.

She was the person I had in mind when I typed my first post in this thread.

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If the shoe fits, find another one.

*** This post was edited by ravenguy98 on 10/24/2002. ***

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 12:32 PM

Ravenguy98 says:

"...all I was saying is that working at a park is hard."

"Am I giving some other impression?"

Not at all, that's why my comments were not directed at you. Sorry to make you feel like you had to explain yourself.

Moosh

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Coaster & Amusement Park Christmas Cards and Merchandise...coming soon! Details in new sig any day now!

*** This post was edited by Mamoosh on 10/24/2002. ***

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 1:37 PM

Ravenguy98, to me, it seems like you are just looking for a pat on the back. Kinda of flaunting it..."look at all the "hard work" I have done. If you really do do as good of a job as you say you do, others will brag for you.

Also, ride ops maybe the most thankless jobs in the world. Now I have never been one so I can't really say how hard the work is, but, it doesn't look that hard. Checking the laps bars. Most people can do that them selves. If you are talking about the guys then the booth then that is a different story. But you can't really talk to them.

When I go to a park,I don't really care to talk to the ride ops. They never talk to me. If they did then I would of said something or other. There are times when they will say something, but most of the times the won't. I wouldn't really think to talk to them if they didn't talk to me. And really, who has time to talk to them. They have to quickly move on to the next goup of people to get in. So, I guess what I am trying to say is, is that I would talk to them if they made the effort to talk to me.

But, I'll think about it more next time. Good luck to you and your friend and keep working hard.

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 2:07 PM

I'm also kinda suprised about how few people actually make comments to Guest Services.

It is a thankless job 99% of the time, but it's gratifying anyway. I mean, you know the guests appreciate it when everyone in the station erupts into applause whenever a train comes in or goes out, you don't need a piece of paper to tell you that.


For those who say it's not a hard job... well, I know you haven't tried it. It is grueling at times. But I wouldn't want to do anything else, which is exactly why you'll see me back at the exact same ride next year, trying to do a repeat of that Crew of the Year award...

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"I sold my soul to Viacom"

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Thursday, October 24, 2002 2:24 PM

I have made it a habit of going to Guest Services to let them know how my day went, good or bad. I have noticed that the parks really like to get positive comments. I also will use employees names, if nessassary.

When I was a ride opp, I made sure that I said "Hello" and "Thanks, Have a good day here at the park", or something along those lines. If I had a few extra moments, I would speak to the guests and thier families one on one. Most of the times they really appreciated the extra attention. So I would have to disagree that it is a thankless job.

I will agree that being a ride opp is a heck of a difficult job. For anyone who doesn't think working at a park would be hard, try it for a season and you will see. On the other hand, it is also a very rewarding job for enthusiasts. I had no idea that a job could make me feel so importiant. I've said it before, working at CP will turn a boy into a man.

EDIT: Vortexguy, I see we have the same opinion.

*** This post was edited by dexter on 10/24/2002. ***

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