Harley Davidson: Six Shift Points of Great Customer Service in Retail

Motorcycle engines have all sorts of sophisticated terms and parts. One of them is something called a shift point. A shift point is the best engine r.p.m. at which to shift gears. With most Harley makes, you have six shift points.

But at Orlando Harley, their six shift points refer to something else as well. Those shift points make up an interesting acronym that sets employee standards about how customers should be treated. They are:

H – Hello.

Make sure you greet the customer when near them.

A – Approachable.

This is not always so easy with individuals who would rather focus on a bike rather than on customers. But even at Harley, your staff has to be approachable. And I would say at Orlando Harley, they very much are.

R – Reliable.

Of course the bikes need to be reliable. But so do the people. When you say you’re going to have a repair done by a certain time, you need to live up to that.

L – Look It Up.

No one has all the answers. Don’t be afraid to look up the answer when you don’t know it.

E – Enthusiasm.

It’s a Harley! There’s nothing quite like being a H.O.G. (Harley Owner’s Group) member. Make sure you celebrate the spirit and joy of riding when you are around customers.

Y – Thank You.

It’s not a small thing to buy a Harley Davidson. Customers make a serious investment. And they could buy elsewhere. Make sure you show your appreciation for them doing business with you.

Coined by Orlando Harley Davidson’s Michele Sullivan, these six points are part of an important training employees go through. Other organizations have their own expected behaviors. Harley makes theirs unique to their culture.

Ask yourself:

  • What behavioral expectations do you have of your employees when they are with your customers?
  • How do you make those behaviors part of your culture?

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