Customer Service Stories – Part IV

Customer Service Stories

WALGREENS Isn’t it cute that Walgreens has a customer service policy where if you’re not offered a receipt…”If we don’t give you a receipt, your order is free” or words to that effect.

What about extending that? If you pay for an item and have your receipt on said person and you trigger an alarm, you’re entitled to a $5 gift card or a free Sunday newspaper? I purchased a $20 item at the pharmacy the other day and I triggered the alarm which generated the paranoid looking manager wanting to ensure I didn’t walk out trying to cheap the corporation.

Look, I paid for the item, and had my receipt and yet triggered the alarm – a little embarrassing. In this scenario, an apology is not enough – Walgreens needs to make amends through a store coupon or gift card. Perhaps that will incentivize their systems’ technicians or the necessary folks to properly configure their alarm system.

RETAIL MANAGERS GREETING YOU LIKE RESTAURANT MANAGERS In some restaurants, you may have the owner or restaurant manager swing by your table to ensure everything is going well with your meal and evening – to ensure things at least meet your expectations. I know they are quite busy and it may be a formality from time to time but there’s certainly something special about this experience.

Switching to retail, if you’re lucky, you may have the cashier ask you if you found everything while shopping. In food stores, I’m afraid to say no as I might delay the checkout line. I appreciate the added touch but why just in the front of the store? Why can’t you have a manager float around the store to ensure you’re finding everything? If you have questions or suggestions, they are there to assist and respond to feedback. In my mind, this approach would be more proactive and it may help to get things addressed before making your way to the cashier.

Again, use the restaurant model, perhaps tweak it a bit and apply to retail, and perhaps in the grocery store space. Would this be greeted as being more customer centric?

HOW COME MLB JUST CAN’T GET IT RIGHT? As most know, if they’ve seen the Oscars a time or two, during a certain part, each show will include ‘In Memoriam’, where they show pictures of all those stars & individuals from the movies and TV that have passed away since the last Oscars. Typically, they may spend a little more time on some famous and well known actors and movie picture professionals. What a nice touch and over the years, the more I watch the Oscars, the more I appreciate that tribute.

Target Field - MLB

Target Field – MLB

Now, on to MLB. Their All-Star game was held in downtown Minneapolis last week, and I was so thankful I had the opportunity to spend a Saturday night around this time last year just appreciating and admiring such a beautiful park. Back to the game, the TV coverage on FOX did not honor any of the former managers or players from yesteryear. As you may remember, Tony Gwynn, an all-time great whose son currently plays in the majors had recently passed. No mention of him. In addition, there were many others, many whom were not as well known but still played a pivot role in MLB. What about a regular All-Star game segment called ‘In Memoriam’ patterned after the Oscars?

Ok MLB, are you listening? Before you can evolve, you have to realize you have a problem. In my opinion, and the opinion of many journalists and baseball fans, you blew it at the All-Star game forgetting to pay tribute to those who have permanently left us. You still have time and will you be willing to realize you have a problem today and begin to work on a permanent solution for all future All-Star games.

One fine example on how MLB dropped the ball, by Paul Sullivan





Kevin Schwarm

I have over 25 years of professional experience in business, information technology (IT), and customer service. Industry experience in retail, medical insurance, higher education, non-profit, financial services, and property and casualty insurance. Customer focused professional interested in providing value (save time, money and aggravation) by evaluating and analyzing information, services and products with a unique perspective.