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CubeSmart - Customer Service Department of the Year

How to EnterCompany: CubeSmart, Wayne, PA
Entry Submitted By: DillonMarcus Executive Retreats
Company Description: CubeSmart, the 4th largest operator of self-storage facilities in the nation, is re-inventing the industry. CubeSmart stands out offering WOW!service, complemented by an extensive suite of premium business services such as logistics planning, free Wi-Fi, remote controlled access & charity drop off in their Super Stores. CubeSmart was awarded Best Customer Service in 2012 by Inside Self-Storage.
Nomination Category: Customer Service Awards Department Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Customer Service Department of the Year - All Other Industries

Nomination Title: CubeSmart

Tell the story about what this nominated department achieved since the beginning of July 2011 (up to 500 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms. Be sure to mention obstacles overcome, innovations or discoveries made, and outcomes:

Changing the Game

Until recently, there has been no service in the self-storage industry. In September 2011, U-Store-It, set out to change that game. In a bold move, U-Store-It hit the refresh button, introducing its new brand and company name: CubeSmart.

CubeSmart made an $8 million investment to update their signage across the country, to create modern looking Super Stores, install high-tech interactive touch screens, and add an impressive number of storage related amenities – 24 in all!

A Smart Decision

But is changing a sign, offering free Wi-Fi and saying you’re all about service make it so? The senior leadership at CubeSmart was smart enough to know that it didn’t. They set out to revolutionize the Customer Experience by focusing on their internal culture. They created a WOW! Department and staffed it with a man with an undeniable track record for inspiring others.

Increasing Our Service iCube

U-Store-It already had a solid commitment to service. CubeSmart was simply raising the bar. The WOW! Department began by ensuring that everyone knew CubeSmart’s Values and what CubeSmart’s slogan “Expect More” really meant.

The WOW! Department created a one-day learning experience offered to employees across the board. Understanding that ‘people support what they help to create’, the WOW! Department conducted conversations with employees to find out how CubeSmart could best own their service culture. These conversations were priceless. First, they created an awareness and an excitement that a program was being built. Second, they produced great ideas to be included in the course. And finally, they significantly lessened the “Us/Them” dynamic that exists when folks are asked to support something that they have no stake in.

WOW! Achieved

Armed with information from interviews, the WOW! Department commissioned the creation of a rock-star Culture class featuring the organization’s Values as the headliner. The results didn’t disappoint. The class kicked-off with a WOW! opening, was peppered with insightful experiential exercises and reinforced with play-filled learning. In order to ensure a consistent Customer experience, The 6 S’s to WOW! Customers in the Store was introduced. The 6 S’s detailed the behavior that was expected, ex: “Stand: Stand up when a Customer enters the store.”; Participants left not only knowing the Values by heart, they left lit-up and inspired to “Give More” from a service perspective – armed with the exact knowledge of what that meant.

But That’s Not All

The course was supplemented by an array of WOW! initiatives designed to spotlight the great service being provided by employees. They include: InstaWOW! (daily recognition), Super WOW! Stories (monthly recognition), and the ALL Star Program (quarterly recognition). The company also invested in their Leaders by developing The Leadership Lab for People Managers™ which showcased the newly minted definition of a CubeSmart Manager along with The Cube Six™, six questions designed to help Managers cultivate employee loyalty.

Customer Loyalty & Industry Recognition!

The Culture experience, along with the collective efforts of CubeSmart, paid off. The Call Center conversion rate has increased a remarkable 17.39% over the previous year and for the first time in its history, CubeSmart was recognized for Best Customer Service in 2012 by Inside Self-Storage!


Provide a brief (up to 100 words) biography about the leader(s) of the nominated customer service organization:

Christopher Marr has been President and Chief Investment Officer of the Company since November 2008 and Chief Operating Officer since May 2012. Mr. Marr served as Chief Financial Officer of the Company from June 2006 to November 2008.

Guy Middlebrooks, VP of Operations has extensive operations and management experience in both the retail and self-storage industries. He oversees and coordinates the management of more than 500 owned and managed self-storage facilities across the U.S. and London.

Tim Killion, Director of Training, Development & WOW!, was hand-picked to join the CubeSmart team in August of 2011.