Life at Sonder: creating memorable experiences for our guests

Hayleigh is a Shift Lead on the Central Guest Services team (CGS) and is based in Denver, Colorado. In this edition of “Life at Sonder,” Hayleigh highlights our Service Principles and what it’s like to create memorable experiences for our guests.

Tell us about what it’s like being on the CGS team!

Life on CGS is unpredictable, but in the best way, because each encounter is different. In my role, I help our guests before, during, and after their stays — things like assisting with booking, troubleshooting during the stay, and completing requests for additional towels/linen/shampoo/etc. 

It’s unlike any other job I’ve had in the past. Everyone at Sonder is amazing, and it’s refreshing to know that my work is appreciated. Not to mention, the team is both diverse and welcoming.

What’s the most challenging part of your role?

Sometimes there is, unfortunately, nothing we can do to fix or help with a situation. All we can do is support the guest and act as a point of contact and an ear to listen. I’m such a “fix it” kind of person, so I always try my best to help as much as possible. 

Can you share a bit about our Service Principles and our approach to helping guests? 

Our Service Principles are a set of values that guides our customer guest services team members when we’re communicating with guests. We incorporate our principles in everything we do: onboarding and training, our quality assurance program, our one-on-one meetings and performance reviews, and in our service initiatives. 

“Take Ownership” is my favorite service principle. It sets the expectation that you should, as often as possible, follow through with guests from start to finish. Taking ownership means that as soon as we answer a text, phone call, or email, we take responsibility for the guest’s needs for that particular situation and remain a constant point of contact for them. 

“Engage personably” is another great one. We approach every situation with an open mind and give ourselves the chance to put ourselves in the guest’s shoes. When you can relate to a guest and let them know that you completely understand their situation and validate them, they feel like they are heard and understood. 

“Identify needs and provide solutions” is where our problem-solving skills come into play; by gathering every detail about the guest and their stay, we’re able to figure out exactly what they need and what/how we can help. 

“Convey Empathy and Communicate Remarkably” — in addition to engaging personably, we’re able to empathize with the guests, while remaining clear and giving our guests the answer/solution they are looking for. 

What keeps you motivated to power through the volume of questions that come through? 

I want to give our guests the most positive and memorable experience possible. I try to be as detailed and thorough so that I can ensure my guest is getting exactly what they need while leaving a lasting positive impression. 

In your opinion, how is the world of customer service/guest experience changing? 

Everything is digital. With different resources/programs, we’re able to help our guests remotely and, usually, we’re able to help them over one call/conversation.

The customer service industry is becoming more humanized and I feel like that is for the better. We do our best to relate personally to the guest and I feel like that really improves their experience.

Fill in the blank: When a guest calls/texts and says _(insert positive feedback)_ it makes me/the team feel ______.
When a guest texts and says “Thank you so much! You’ve been so wonderful!”, it makes me feel like I’ve done a great job and that our guest is happy. 

What’s your advice for anyone looking to begin a career in CGS/Guest Experience?

Do it! Since working in the hospitality industry, I’ve realized how much I love talking with and helping guests. It’s eye-opening and humbling; I feel like everyone should try it, at least once!

Rapid-fire questions

Work from home or the office?

Work from the office!

Book or podcast; got a favorite?

Book – Pride and Prejudice

Favorite travel companion?

My son!

What’s the last trip you took?

Orlando, FL was a blast!

What’s the next trip you want to take?

Portland, Oregon

What’s the next Sonder you want to stay in?

This awesome 2 bedroom space in Philadelphia

Favorite mode of transport: plane, train or automobile?

Automobile, for sure!

Interested in learning more about our teams and opportunities? Check out our careers page.

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