Silver Sneakers – Maturity Matters in Customer Service
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I ran into my local Lowes last week to get a light fixture and two ceiling moldings for my home office and master bedroom. I hate to say that this is not a chore I love doing. I enter the store fraught with worry about whether or not I’ll get the right item, if there will be anyone on the floor to help me, how long will I have to wait for a knowledgable sales person to rear his or her head and be of service – you get the picture.
To make matters worse, I had three children waiting at home, two of whom had upcoming doctor’s appointments in my town – 18 miles away. Lo and behold, as I entered the designated “lighting” department, Errol – my soon-to-be hero, emerged. Errol looked to be in his late sixties and asked if he could assist me with the list of items I was holding in my hands.
“Absolutely,” I said, and proceeded to explain my list of wants/needs to him. In less than five minutes, Errol had assisted me in finding a two-light sconce to enlighten the descent into my finished basement/family room, and found two of the same ceiling moldings that we both agreed were better looking than the rest. As I thanked Errol profusely for helping me navigate the home super store, he told me it was his first day on the job. I said if things didn’t work out for him at Lowes, to give me a call and I’d hire him.
Conversely, I recently popped into my local bakery here in Concord, MA to buy the most delicious bread I’ve ever tasted – Olive Bread! Before me in line was a woman who was purchasing a sampling of pastries and desserts in clear containers. The array of delectable treats sat on the counter until it occurred to the 16-year-old girl who was waiting on this woman to ask her if she wanted a bag. Of course she did – how else could one woman manage 10 individually packaged treats from here to her car? The young girl began stacking them up so high in a plastic bag that the woman had to stop and request she give her a bag with a handle. Otherwise, the pastries would be sure to tip over and ruin the beautiful presentation that, no doubt, had something to do with the fee she was paying. The girl obliged with a ripped paper bag with a handle and, exasperated, the woman left the bakery.
Common sense is anything but common, I agree, but with age and experience comes wisdom. Fortunately, Lowes is a company that values maturity and in making the investment in people over the age of 60 – is making a sound business decision as well. I know the next time I need to pop into a home improvement super store, I’m going to look for Errol to help guide the way.
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