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The Nordstrom Way to Customer Service Excellence: The Handbook For Becoming the "Nordstrom" of Your Industry Paperback – Mar 5 2012

5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 2 edition (March 27 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118076672
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118076675
  • Product Dimensions: 18.8 x 1.1 x 23.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #73,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From the Back Cover

Praise for The Nordstrom Way

"The Nordstrom Way shows the direct link between empowering your employees and creating a long-term relationship with your customers. More businesses should follow their example."
—HOWARD SCHULTZ, Chairman, Starbucks Coffee

"Offers lessons on achieving extraordinary customer service born from three decades of Robert Spector's study of Nordstrom. This book will give you everything you need to take your service culture to the next level. The payoff, as Nordstrom knows, is sustainable profits through the loyalty and evangelism of those you serve!"
—Joseph Michelli, PhD, New York Times #1 bestselling author of The Zappos Experience

"Businesses should use this book as a primer on making and keeping happy, satisfied customers."
—J. W. Marriott, Jr., Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Marriott International

If you want to become the Nordstrom of your industry, this is your guidebook. One of only five companies to make Fortune's "best companies to work for" and "most admired" list every year the surveys have been taken, Nordstrom never experienced a quarterly loss during the recent economic downturn. The Nordstrom Way to Customer Service Excellence, Second Edition explains what every business can learn from the world's most respected customer service–driven company.

This handbook includes a wealth of new resources for managers and trainers, including assessment tools, exercises for improving teamwork and morale, and the secrets of Nordstrom's top-selling salespeople. New material in this revised edition includes:

  • New chapters on online customer service and the innovative social commerce features of Nordstrom's website
  • Breakthroughs on Nordstrom's multichannel approach to customer service
  • Tools for creating a customer-driven culture
  • And more!

About the Author

ROBERT SPECTOR is a bestselling business book author, international speaker, and consultant on Nordstrom's principles of customer service. His clients include companies such as Charles Schwab, Infiniti, Pfizer, Humana, and Wells Fargo. He has written for the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and Sports Illustrated. For more information or to contact Robert, visit

PATRICK McCARTHY was with Nordstrom for more than thirty years and retired as the company's all-time top-performing salesperson.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Nordstrom is great example of a company that has stuck by its founding principles and values through 12 decades. Anyone looking to elevate their customer service approach and position themselves above the cacophony of business noise and competitors would be well served to read this latest iteration of Robert's book. It isn't about just setting your people free, it is about setting them free with a very clear knowledge of what is important to both the customer and the company. It is true entrepreneurial direction within an accountability framework. Brilliant.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Lots of practical advice on providing superior customer service. The sad part is that you don't need to do much to be better than your competition. The simplicity of the Nordstrom Way is fantastic....simply empower your people to "use their best judgement".
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was putting together a speech on Nordstrom for my class assignment and this book gave me the bulk of my information and I learned a lot about the company. What a great story and I really admire how they run their business.
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For all folks in any kind of service industry.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa2fc89fc) out of 5 stars 31 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2fbda14) out of 5 stars This Company Just Gets It; The Nordstrom Way, Not As Easy As You'd Think.... Jan. 7 2013
By JP - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book, The Nordstrom Way, has been on my wishlist for a couple years and for the holidays I decided to buy it for myself. The book does a good job presenting the history and founding of the Nordstrom department store. The meat of this book, comes in discussing how Nordstrom really wow's their customers. Some could say there are other great companies out there that provide impeccable service, Marriott, Disney and even this website, However, there's a difference between good customer service and going above and beyond to truly meet the needs of and satisfy your customers.

This book basically lays out in a 'here's how you do it' way, how to reproduce the success of Nordstrom. The sad thing is, this message falls on deaf ears. A fine example in the book discusses a very popular department store, that when facing a Nordstrom store opening in their area, suggested to their employees that they would have to start smiling at and acknowledging customers in the store. Better yet, this popular department store produced a three hour training video regarding how to 'imitate' the service that one would receive from Nordstrom.

This book is a great read if you really want to find out what it takes to become a cornerstone in your market, the standard for service in your industry. The author lays out such things that the greats like Marriot, Disney and Amazon used to do like Nordstrom, however a sunken economy and falling profits soon changed these greats. Examples would include using strictly word of mouth advertising and not wasting money on big TV spots, or focusing on providing world class customer service instead of touting how you are becoming the world's most customer centric company. There's a big difference between being customer-driven and customer-focused.

The Nordstom Way is not an easy ticket to profits and loyal customers. It is called the 'Nordstrom' way for a reason; they perfected the art of customer-focused service. All of the principals in this book are applicable to any customer facing industry however; most businesses will forsake long time customers for short term profits. For those who value their long term customers, they won't trust their own employees enough to allow them to do right by the customer.

As scary as it may be to have just one rule in your business, use good judgment in all situations, allowing your employees to feel the freedom to really do what it takes to wow the customer will pay back in dividends over and over. This book really should be read by every CEO of a customer oriented company, but getting back to the root of it, corporate America is too afraid to trust their own employee's and change in management structure, is a very scary thing to them.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa31d50c0) out of 5 stars Solid theories but GREAT examples May 27 2014
By John J. Franco - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book focuses on how Nordstrom delivers their superior customer service, from hiring and training to rewards and compensation. The idea is that readers can learn from Nordstrom and apply some of those lessons to their own organizations. Some of the concepts are basic - hire great people, and give them the autonomy to make customers happy. But author Robert Spector goes into great detail about how Nordstrom really lives their beliefs, from preaching an inverted pyramid with customers at the top and senior management at the bottom, to quarterly celebrations of the best performers.

There are definitely parts of this book that are repetitive. The author even goes so far as to repeat the same phrases over and over. But there is a lot that can be gained from this book. Customer service requires humility. Management needs to support (and trust) their employees. Everyone needs to feel (and be) fully invested in success. Customers need to like you and want to do business with you. Building relationships with customers lead to long-term success.

I think this book has a little more value than a typical "management" book because of the stories. Most of the key points are illustrated with examples of outstanding service provided by a Nordstroms employee. I think they add a lot of value
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa3085468) out of 5 stars Winning Strategy Aug. 29 2014
By Janelle - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Truly great customer service companies don't advertise having great customer service. It is just known. Nordstrom is one of those few companies. Working there in college, I learned sales can be personally rewarding by building great relationships, which in turn helps you achieve high sales goals--all through customer service. This book rings true to the Nordstrom way and offers inside advice on customer service excellence and building a brand and reputation to stand above the competition. Your customers will appreciate you reading this book!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa33f9be8) out of 5 stars The Essence of Customer Service Sept. 1 2013
By Norm MacDonald - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition
Robert Spector captures the true essence of the Nordstrom culture. The history, the attitude, and the implementation of outstanding service is unfolded in an easy to read and compelling fashion. The principles needed to carry the Nordstrom culture to any business are not camouflaged behind technical terms or convoluted theories. They are laid out plain and simple yet in a way that keeps the reader involved and looking for the next idea. It is a book for anyone who touches customers in any way. We may not all rise to the level of "The Nordstrom Way" but it sure gives the tools necessary to work in that direction.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa2fbde04) out of 5 stars Inspirational March 16 2014
By Sierra - Published on
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
After receiving news I was excepted into the Nordstrom internship, I began looking for more information on the company. This book has furthered my love of the Nordstrom culture and my excitement in joining their team.