Tied Up and Left Hanging

Prepared not to like it from the outset. James really enjoyed himself at Center Parcs over Easter – How do Center Parcs do it?..and how can we with much smaller businesses learn from it?…..

Julia and I bowed to pressure from our three sons and took them to Center Parcs for a few days over Easter.   We’d never been to a holiday village like this before, always preferring smaller venues ­– and I was prepared not to like it. But we had a ball!

Having three sons I was felt somewhat smug at the swimming pool over the dads of girls (combing, drying and preening their daughter’s hair? no need for that with boys).  I was less smug when I discovered that, to my sons, the aim of the high ropes adventure was to scare their father.

As I was tied up a tree, dangling by a rope, I started to think…..

Center Parcs is fantastic and we had what seemed like a really personal experience. But at the same time I worked out that there were maybe 6,000 people staying there…So how do they do this?

Fantastic systems are key. Everything was systemised and it ran like clockwork.
Andrew is our systems champion and can be somewhat disdainful of my inability to stick to the system. However, how can we with much smaller businesses use the lessons from Center Parcs? How can the effect of what might seem like bureaucracy and systems actually enable you to perform a very personal level of service?

Ever improving systemisation is the first thing. Center Parcs’ emphasis on customer feedback is really interesting. Systems don’t get that good without continuous improving or by accepting mediocracy.

All this also needs supporting with great technology but, most importantly, the system needs staff with the right attitudes and behaviours towards                                                                                           customers and clients.  The staff were all trained or chosen because they looked you in the eye, and spoke and behaved with genuine enthusiasm.

Thank you Center Parcs!


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