The word “superhero” conjures images
of Spiderman saving the world from calamity or Batman foiling the
latest evildoer. But at The Wave Waterpark, superheroes are
concerned with something more basic, though just as hard to come
by: excellent customer service.
In targeting a young staff of 16- to 24-year-olds, operators needed
a training program that would not only teach the elements of great
customer service, but also reinforce them daily. So they came up
with a model based on “SUPERHEROES.” The
“super” stands for:
- Smile and use positive body language
- U-rock. No personal issues; show your
- Play and make their day. Greet guests and answer
- Extreme enthusiasm for what you do.
- Reach out and time out. Find out about the guests
and hear their stories.
Reach out and time out. Find out about the
guests and hear their stories.
The “heroes” part comes from the park’s core
mission statement of “being Helpful, practicing
Excellence, demonstrating Responsibility, providing Opportunity,
showing Excitement and creating Safety for all of our
To help keep these principles in the forefront of employees’
minds, each day starts with a staff meeting, and individual and
team rewards are given out regularly. “We do a debriefing
with a fun game and brain teasers to get everyone motivated, and to
get some fun and laughter going,” says Natalie Livingston,
This focus on customer service helps reduce turnover and boost
attendance. “We often get comments from guests, such as,
‘Your employees are so fun, they must love working
here!’” Livingston says.
Marketing also has been a key factor in attracting local families
and tourists. In 2007, The Wave increased attendance by 7 percent,
thanks in part to a joint promotional campaign with other local
attractions. The campaign offered season-pass purchasers free
admission to the other attractions.
In the off-season, The Wave hosts two high school swim and water
polo teams, and offers swim lessons, water aerobics and lap swims,
and the like.
The park’s newest attraction is Rippity’s Rainforest, a
four-story, dry attraction for kids with climbing nets, tunnels and
slides — plus a not-so-dry spraypad nearby. —