Customer Service with Huge Smiles at Marriott Century Center, Atlanta

Our Welcome Experience

Over the years I’ve stayed in various hotels for short visits.  Most of these visits over the past two years have been business trips, and for the most part my visits have been pleasant.  This trip has been different:  my stay has been fantastic because of the high level of customer service on the  part of every employee I came in contact with at the Marriott Century Center, Atlanta.

My roommate, Ellene Breedlove Davis and I were dropped on by her husband on Thursday morning at about 6:45 a.m. to attend the Niche Affiliate Marketing System Workshop (NAMS7) organized by David Perdew, and our wonderful experience began.  We were greeted and welcomed by Derrick, the Bell Captain, who immediately made us feel as if we were the most important guests to arrive at the hotel.  As we got to the Front Desk and were welcomed by the Receptionist we told him that our luggage would probably have to go to a holding bay since check-in time was much later.

Derrick proactively asked the Receptionist to check if our room was available, and to our delight it was.  Of course, as he escorted us to our room he stressed the importance of always asking if your room is available, even if you arrive early. He continued to point out where key areas were located, like the exercise room, dining room, etc. In response to our questions about Wi-Fi he told us where in  the hotel it was available for free, but he would check to see if there were specific arrangements for our group.  Before he left us he checked that everything was ok.  Within minutes of leaving us Derrick called and gave us the relevant information concerning the Wi-Fi.

Everything Derrick did was part of his job.  However, it was his attitude that made the difference and at the same time demonstrating superior customer service:

1)   Greet  customers with a smile and  make eye contact.  He did exactly that.
2)    Make your customers feel special.  Derrick made us feel like we were VIP guests.
3)   Be willing to go the extra mile.  Derrick could have suggested that we call the front desk to get clarification on the Wi-Fi.  He did not.  He went back and checked for us, then called us with the information.

Our Dining Room Experience

On Thursday  evening after spending the day in a training session we went to the dining room where we were greeted by a gracious, smiling staff, who once again made us feel very special.

After we placed our order with Kaleda, our Server, we went to the Salad Bar and had our salad while we waited for the entrée.  It was a little delayed but in that time Richard, the Dining Room Manager, and Kaleda inquired several times if everything was ok and apologized for the delay.

What especially impressed us was that they demonstrated genuine concern and empathy. They were so kind, we weren’t overly-concerned about the delay. When our entrée arrived it was delicious! However, in the meantime because of our wait time Richard graciously offered us complimentary dessert which we were happy to accept.

Too often we hear only of the negative experiences.  Ellene and I felt it would a disservice not to share our positive experiences with employees  who represented their  organization very well, and who demonstrated superior customer service which led to total customer satisfaction.


Customer Service with Huge Smiles at Marriott Century Center, Atlanta — 13 Comments

  1. Hey Yvonne –

    I really appreciated you writing this post about the hotel. They are wonderful people and great examples of customer service. You’re right.
    But they are also a real delight to plan an event with.



    • Thank you, David for coming over and leaving your comment. I can only imagine the planning that goes into an event like NAMS and having such wonderful people to work with must be a relief and a true asset.

  2. Philip M. Anderson on said:


    Wonderful article! Most people say exactly that: “Well, that’s their job; that’s what they’re supPOSed to do.” Yes it is, on both accounts. But OUR job as the recipient of those services is to make it easy for them to do their job well. And showing gratitude like you did, especially verbalizing it in written word, will make what they do an even bigger joy to them. I hope they had a chance to read this!

    Nicely done!

    Phil Anderson
    Anderson Social Media Solutions

    • Phil, I believe it’s so important to let people know when they do something you appreciate whether it’s within our family or outside and I know this is something you’ve written about.

      I actually wrote the post before I left Atlanta and gave it to David Perdew who said he’d take it to the Manager. People deserve to know when they’ve made a positive impact on others. Thank you.

  3. Yvonne,

    I have now been to the hotel you are referring to here, the Marriott Century Center in Atlanta, twice over the past six months. They are an excellent example of what customer service can, and should, be about.

    Thank you for taking the time to acknowledge the people who work at this wonderful hotel.


    • Thank you for adding your positive experience, Connie. I appreciate you leaving your comments.

      It’s great to find organizations and employees who truly show that they care about their customers and provide a high level of service.

  4. Ellene Breedlove Davis on said:

    Yvonne, As you stated above this was a wonderful experience! Beginning with Derrick at the front door through out the NAMS conference. Each time I changed classes, the tables were fresh with clean glasses and water.

    Many thanks Century Center Marriot, Decatur, GA for making it easy for me to enjoy the conference.

  5. Kerry Jones on said:

    This article was nicely written Yvonne.

    I hope to use your pointers in the near future.

    It’s so nice to hear of an exemplary experience as much too often we hear of what has gone wrong. Also, quite often diligent efforts on our behalf are overlooked.

    I also appreciated that you took the extra effort to remember the names of the staff. No doubt they realized that you took an interest in them as well.

    Well done!

    • You’re so right about that, Kerry. I believe it’s important to acknowledge the good that others do. It’s easy to say, ‘Oh well, that’s what they’re paid to do’ but people are encouraged by appreciation and it encourages them to do even more.

  6. Alaine Glockner on said:

    Such a Skilled writer. So many blog writers forget that in order for the reader to take on baord what they are reading it must be written with clarity. You have achieved this and for this I think you. I will submit to your RSS feed. Again thanks.

    • Thank you, Alaine, for visiting and leaving your comment. Thanks for subscribing to the site’s RSS feed.

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