On Great Service: A Framework for Action

Leonard L. Berry (Author)


Improving service quality has finally become a top priority of management today, yet according to service quality expert Leonard Berry only a handful of companies have managed to determine exactly what to improve and how to improve it. For the past two years, Berry studied dozens of companies of all sizes renowned for their capacity to deliver what they promise and more. From his on-site observation of the strategies and practices of such companies as Mary Kay Cosmetics, Tattered Cover Book Store, Longo Toyota & Lexus, Lakeland Regional Medical Center, and Hard Rock Cafe, Berry has constructed a dynamic new framework for improving service.
This framework provides a roadmap for implementation found nowhere else in the service quality literature. In every chapter Berry draws on his twelve years of research in service quality to explain each part of the framework in detail. He provides rich insights and inspiring examples of great service -- including numerous examples unique to this book as well as the classic success stories of USAA, Taco Bell, and many more. Berry shows that a company must (1) develop service leadership skills and values -- a concept substantially different from developing general leadership; (2) build a service quality information system; and (3) create a comprehensive service strategy based on the four principles of great service: reliability, surprise, recovery, and fairness. He demonstrates how these four principles, when adopted by the leadership and infused into the systems of a service company, are the building blocks of the framework and form the anchor for implementation.
Berry shows how the artistry of great service can be systematically created from this foundation through a company's organizational structure, technology, and often under utilized human resources assets. He challenges service managers to set their service quality aspirations higher, and his innovative, practical ideas will help them achieve those higher standards. Linking service excellence to value creation, Berry provides solid financial reasons for the necessity of great service. Here, at last, is the book for which managers in every service industry have waited: Leonard Berry's operating manual for turning plans for great service into action.

Product Details

Free Press
Publish Date
April 01, 1995
6.46 X 1.08 X 9.6 inches | 1.26 pounds
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About the Author

Leonard Berry holds the JCPenney Chair of Retailing Studies at Texas A&M University, where he is also Professor of Marketing. A former national president of the American Marketing Association, he is coauthor of Delivering Quality Service (Free Press, 1990) and Marketing Services (Free Press, 1991). Dr. Berry and his colleagues are creators of the service quality gaps model used throughout the world.


Richard C. Bartlett Vice Chairman, Mary Kay Corporation, CEO, The Richmont Group Berry has provided what is desperately needed in many companies: a hands-on guide to improving service quality. This is the most original and practical book I have seen on the subject.
David S. Pottruck President and CEO, Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. I could hardly put this down. I almost wore out a highlighting pen identifying all the practical thoughts and implementation tips that take this book from theoretical treatise to managerial handbook. I can't wait for my Schwab colleagues to read it, and I sure hope our competitors never do.
Richard Teeterlink President and CEO, Harley-Davidson, Inc. Provides a succinct formula for achieving service leadership success.
Jerry Richardson Chairman and CEO, Flagstar Companies, Inc., Owner/founder, the Carolina Panthers Anyone in a service business who isn't familiar with Berry's work is missing a huge opportunity. He is a first-round draft pick on our team.
Leonard A. Schlesinger Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School A "high payoff" book. This is a must read!
John E. Martin Chairman, Taco Bell Corporation Truly gives a framework for action in the 90s.
Christopher Hart President, the Spire Group, Ltd. The most powerful, comprehensive work on service quality to date.
Philip Kotler S.C. Johnson & Son Distinguished Professor of International Marketing, Northwestern University Finally, a service book that shows how to go about achieving service greatness.
Carl Sewell President, Sewell Motor Company The definitive guidebook to great customer service.
Robert D. Kunisch Chairman, President, and CEO, PHH Corporation Berry's clear and concise style distills years of research into common-sense guidelines for action.