Monday, December 28, 2009

Kindness makes a difference

The economy doesn't seem to be kind to anyone these days, but a few experiences in the past couple of weeks remind me that people still are...

--I was debating on a purchase in a store that shall remain unnamed, but the price was somewhat steeper than I was wanting to pay. I kept coming back to look at the item that I was considering, and one of the store clerks said to the effect, "I'll let you know something--that will be 50% off tomorrow." I asked if it was just the following day (knowing I wouldn't be back the next day) and was told that it would be discounted for at least a week. There were not many of the item on the shelves, and the clerk even offered to put my name on it and put it under the counter. I declined, but said I would be back. I was grateful to the clerk for sharing that information.

I was back two days later, and the item was nowhere to be seen on the shelf I had visited previously. I need to mention that the store in question is not one that I would ordinarily frequent because (at least in my perception) the prices there tend to be higher. But because I had come back another day, and had not purchased the original item immediately, I had more time to look around. I came across something that was a perfect purchase at a reasonable price for someone else on my list, and was going up to purchase it, when I asked the clerk who was there (not the same one) if the fact that I couldn't find it on the shelf meant that they didn't have it. The clerk checked on the computer, and directed me to the promotional table, where, yes indeed, the original item was there, discounted price and all.

I don't mention the name of the store because I wouldn't want the store clerk who was so kind to get in trouble over it. But, I will point out that as a result of this employee's kindness, there were two purchases made, not one, and that now I will most likely return for further purchases sooner because I discovered, only because of my return visit, that there are more items that I may like to purchase eventually. The kindness of the employee does nothing but improve my overall impression of the store as well...

--I've been using coupons more, and there are times that I will go out of my way because the coupons enclosed in the newspaper make it worth my while to visit a particular shopping establishment. I can sometimes get sticker shock visiting the dairy section of just about any grocery store, especially when it comes to cheese prices. So recently, when there was a good coupon price on bricks of cheese, I made my way to the store in question so that I could take advantage of it.

When I got there, the advertised price on the dairy case was a dollar more than the coupon price. Thing is, on top of the bricks of cheese in question, someone had left one of the coupons so that someone else could take advantage of the better price. I left it there, since I had my coupon (and cheese limit) in hand, but I was really glad to see that someone was that considerate of others. It is that store's policy to have a coupon-sharing bin at the entrance to the store, but to go through the extra effort to help ensure that the coupon was used by placing it where someone who didn't have time to go through the bin/didn't know about the coupon price was just an example of extra kindness to me....

The preceding examples of kindness were personal experiences, but there are evidently many more experiences happening across our state where people are being kind to each other, if you look at this article from the Idaho Statesman. Despite the rough economy, many people in Idaho have made huge efforts to help those less fortunate.

Way to go, Idaho. Kindness does make a difference, whether it's materially with goods that are needed, or whether it's the smile that comes because you know someone is going to save a dollar because there was an individual nice enough to leave a coupon for someone else...


Kymber said...

teehee...and share those kindnesses by sharing your personal examples AND the link!

but really - to get down to the basic facts - what you experienced was good 'ol fashioned customer service done right - because the way to get someone to keep coming back to your store (as in your first example) is to treat each customer with courtesy and respect - something that has been atrociously declining in North America over the recent several decades.

hey - remember when a product that you purchased was manufactured in North America and was sold in town at the Mom and Pop Shop and you were ensured that if anything was wrong with the product you just had to take it back to the store?

we all have moved sooo away from that concept - we all have become such consumers that Mom and Pop Shops have closed and we buy everything from Walmart or a dollar store ---- we need to start demanding customer service and customer satisfaction again!

did my rant just take over your comments section??? i am so sorry Marie - you know how much i respect you and the Idaho Preppers Network! just venting i suppose!

anyway - thanks for sharing your experiences!

from me and mine to you and yours - i hope that you had a wonderful Christmas and i wish you all the very best in the new year to come!

and to all Idaho Preppers - all the best to all of you from the Canadian Preppers Network!

Marie said...

Kymber--You leave wonderful comments, and you are welcome to take over my comments section anytime... :)
I think that you are right about customer service--in my experience, what that particular employee did was above and beyond, but it would be nice if that kind of thing occurred more often.

I hope you had a fantastic Christmas as well, and wish you all the best in 2010! And I hope everyone takes advantage of the great information available on the Canadian Preppers Network!