Editorial. Customer Service

People may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel. 

Massage therapy is essentially and purely about customer service. You would be hard-pressed to find, or to imagine a more perfect example of what great customer service is. The best massage therapists give wholly and generously of themselves. 

You cannot pretend to care if you are a massage therapist. A massage is one of the most intimate of treatments, with the attention of the therapist focused solely on the individual for an extraordinary amount of time. 

The hands cannot lie.

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An individual chooses to study Massage Therapies because they are interested in people and because they are helpers. The Massage Therapy student devotes themselves to studies that will broaden and deepen their understanding of human health. How fortunate are those who have the privilege to have a career that focuses on, and promotes health.

When the client calls for help, often they have tried a circuitous route of medications and various physical therapies before finding their way to you. By the time a Massage Therapist is called, the pain has been aggravated, prolonged, and they will have arrived at their maximum tolerance. Like a wounded animal, the human tortured by pain and immobility must be given sensitive care. 

Massage is a powerful and effective tool to help people. A Massage Therapist is a bit like an Alchemist. We welcome these desperate calls for help. We delight in the transformation that we can enable. The individual empowered with health is a joyous payment.

The best Massage Therapists will continue throughout the length and breadth of their career to gain the knowledge and the skills necessary to help, and to be more effective in that help. They will employ any and all aids to achieve the goal of excellence in customer care. 

I do not think of you as simply my customer; I have taken you under wing and into my heart. I look forward to taking care of you. When you come for a visit I am genuinely happy to see you. I have made preparations for you. I will meet your trust and confidence with knowledge, integrity, and skill. 

There are many thoughtful details that can enhance treatment, appealing to all of the senses. A clean and aesthetically pleasing, peaceful environment with deep flannel sheets, enchanting music, refreshing and relaxing smells, special lotions, customized treatments, and personalized care. A Massage Therapist must also be able to consistently operate a functional, efficient business. 

Thank You

I have been one of those fortunate to have devoted my career to promoting health. But the therapy was not a one-way street. Being a Massage Therapist and caring for people has brought me out of my introverted self and has given me the opportunity to develop communication skills that have enriched my life. Yes, I value the practical skills that I have gained as a Therapist and as a business owner, but above all, I appreciate that I have the opportunity to learn the language of love.

The Standard of Excellence in Customer Service

  • A quality product
  • Consistent delivery of that product
  • Attention to detail

Once these three components are in place and functioning at a high level, attention to, and care of the customer becomes the priority with devotion to the details that create an exceptional experience. 

  • People may forget what you said, but they will never forget how you made them feel. - Carl W. Buehner

As a business owner, it is necessary to let people know about your great product and service.

  • People respond well to kindness and respect
  • Ask your customer to be a part of the solution, and don't view them as part of the problem. - Alan Weiss, PhD
  • Always do more than is required of you.
  • Check this out: 5 Star Service

The personal experience with customer service, in the role of customer, can also be very instructive. These are the common customer service mistakes that I notice:

  • Poor service to customer because of mature age.
  • Customer service representative answers many questions except the one being asked by the customer.
  • The customer works harder than the customer service representative.
  • The customer is more friendly, polite, and patient than the CSR.

There are many practical skills  involved in customer service:


  1. Valerie Tonner, over the course of your career your passion and your heart has healed so many. I have seen people walk in to 296 Taché as complete strangers, only to walk out an hour later as your new-found friends. I have seen those same individuals after years of your strategic and compassionate care, become more than clients, more than friends, but a family of people who are transformed not only physically but also emotionally by your careful application of knowledge. The service you provide to customers defies common descriptors that loosely encapsulate what customer service ought to be. The care you provide is on a level which so few people are even able to show to their own families. I applaud you for all you have accomplished in this business and in this life. Wherever you find yourself next I am certain that it will be a warm and vibrant atmosphere, made all the more enchanting because of your contribution to it. But damn it, we will all miss 296!

  2. Your blog is amazing Valerie. Your very caring nature comes through the lines of knowledge you share so generously with everyone. You are a very creative human being with much patience and resiliency. Research is not always easy. Managing your massage therapy business has always been with much attention to detail. Your blog shows this same attention. Kudos to you.(This message has been transferred from the Nature and The City page) Yannick LeGrand Polejewski

  3. Hi,your blog is really nice and provides a great info about Massage elanora i want to continue with your blogs and thanks to share such a nice info with us.


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