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Customer Service Elf – Santa Claus Office

A Typical Workday

As a customer care elf at the Santa Claus Office, I had different responsibilities, depending on the type of shift.

My most frequent duties included: greeting customers after they had met Santa Claus, showing them their photos and videos, guiding them in their choice and purchase, and helping to leave them with a positive experience.

In other shifts, I had different responsibilities such as: welcoming the little ones and the grown-ups by preparing them to meet Santa Claus, picking up some useful details about them to report to the big man or my fellow elves (e.g. where they came from, language spoken, any specifics)

 

Highlights:

  • Witnessing the delight on the faces of children and families as they interact with Santa Claus
  • The realization that I am part of a real dream come true for so many children
  • The great relationship developed with the team: my peers, supervisors, and manager
  • Talking in many languages with people from all over the world.

Challenges:

  • The constant levels of attention to details needed
  • The complexity inherent to interacting with such a large number of people
  • Keeping calm if a customer gets frustrated and helping them to calm down
  • Doing the same task every day for so many hours can become overwhelming.

 

Overall, my workday was a balance of joy, commitment, excitement, and challenges, all of which contributed in a fulfilling and memorable experience at the Santa Claus Office.

 

 

An example of Customer Service Elf’s day at work:

I get to work at 8:35 am, in time to change into my elf uniform (which you can personally choose from head to toe) and make coffee for everyone.

8:50 am: There is the morning briefing where our supervisors inform us of all the bookings, requests, and schedules for the day. It is a short but useful   moment, as well as a good ritual to start the day.

8:55 am: It’s time to open my workstation, turn on the screens (we have many), and the music, and start doing some magic. At the photo library, I will turn on the printer, check how many prints I have left and get an extra box of printing paper for when I’ll need it later, open the checkout program, the work chat, and the image viewer where people will be able to see their photos

9 am: The doors open and often, at Christmas time, there is already a queue outside, and soon the Santa Claus office is filled with life, families, and dreams. Eventually, the first customers arrive at the photo library as well, they give me their elf card, which I scan to show them their pictures and videos. If they purchase the digital package, I make sure to activate the download option, and if they choose a print, I will quickly launch one while I prepare the frame and envelope for when it is ready. I make conversation, ask where they are from, and in the meantime, I prepare the balance to complete their purchase. The checkout is quite intuitive, there are specific buttons for each type of product, and it is unlikely that you’ll make a mistake. But if you do, don’t worry, everything can be fixed!

The day gets busy very quickly. You have to stay focused and ready for various situations.  There is a procedure for everything, and your supervisors and senior colleagues are always ready to help if you are unsure.

11 am – 12.30 pm. Is the time for lunch, half an hour in the break room where there is everything you need to heat up your lunch, have tea or a coffee.

1 pm: I go back to my station. At this point the queue is still strong, so the pace remains intense. I always like to have a look around the other stations and see or ask if my colleagues need anything since I haven’t yet gotten back to my station. Sometimes a glance is enough to tell if a colleague needs help: perhaps with the printer, or with a customer who speaks a different language. Generally, all it takes is a little time, a lot of patience, and an equal amount of kindness to solve the problem.

2 pm: 2nd break, shorter this time, 10 or 15 minutes depending on the working hours.

2.15 pm: Some of the traffic may have cleared up by now. If I am in the photo library, there will probably be paper to change to the printer or envelopes for photographs to be prepared. When there are no customers or there are more elves than customers, we get on with the things we will need when the place is full again.

4 pm: The second round of coffee breaks begins.

4.15 pm: The day continues; generally, a second wave of customers and groups arrives around mid-afternoon. It’s a nice moment to have some fun with children of all ages. At this point many families with children are quite exhausted from the long day, remember to save some patience for this part of the day.

5:30 pm: We are approaching the final sprint, amidst a lot of work, a few jokes, photographs with overjoyed children, and teary-eyed parents.

6:30 pm: It’s half an hour to closing time, and my job now is to concentrate on the last customers, close the register, and make sure that the workstation is in the best possible condition for those who will be working there the next day. That’s why, after serving the last ones, I follow the closing procedure: counting money, printing out the closing receipt to check that the numbers add up, and gathering the vouchers and signed receipts that I have collected during the day. I also shut down the programs, restart the computer, and turn off the printer. Each of the steps is written on a leaflet stuck to the computer, as is the opening procedure.

7:15 pm: The lights are off, I hang my elf hat and head out, tired but happy to have done my absolute best to ensure that the magic lives on, every day.

 

Living in Lapland

I loved living in Lapland; even just stepping out of the house, taking a walk by the frozen river, and seeing the snow-covered pine peaks of the nearby forest, put me in a good mood. On the bus, I would read, listen to music or chat with my colleagues, who were also on the same bus.

 

Break Time Activities and Weather Impact

Breaks started at 11 AM for lunch, around 2 PM and 4 PM for two coffee breaks. During these breaks, I would recharge, eat a snack (or chocolate that magically appeared on the table), read, and socialize with my colleagues. Despite the challenges of the dark December days, I fully embraced the winter weather, finding joy in the snowy landscape and reveling in the wonders of Lapland.

 

Lapland Staff Oy | Yrjö Kokon tie 4 | FI-99300 MUONIO | Tel: +358 400 164 730 | info (@) laplandstaff.fi

Lapland Staff Oy
Yrjö Kokon tie 4 | FI-99300 MUONIO
Tel: +358 400 164 730
info (@) laplandstaff.fi

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