If you're a hotel guest, you don’t need to call the front desk to get what you want – the staff will KNOW, just by looking at you.
Take the boutique hotel chain Affina. They’ve kicked their personal service up a notch by training all hotel employees to read your body language - everyone from housekeeping to the concierge.
A body language expert trained employees on what cues to look for. A guest who makes eye contact while walking down the hall, for instance, may be open to conversation. A business traveler constantly tugging on an ear is probably stressed and may be interested in a yoga kit — or perhaps a therapeutic pillow from the hotel's pillow menu. Employees were taught to mirror a guest's volume and rhythm of speech to put them at ease.
They learned that if guests are constantly touching their faces, it's a likely sign they're anxious after a long day of meetings or travel. And that’s a cue that the employee should do something to get them to their room quickly, or offer them some bottled water while waiting.
John Moser is the chief marketing officer for Affinia. And he says, a lot of companies think customer service is about how many times a phone should ring before its answered. Instead, he wants to give his staff tools they can use to help identify what's the right way to address somebody at a particular moment.
And that attitude is catching on. Now a lot of hotel chains are training the staff in the art of reading body language. So the next time you’re at a hotel, don’t be weirded out if the bellman is sizing you up. He may be trying to see if you need help with your bags.