Monday, May 13, 2013

The Tale of Two Grocery Stores

And now a tale of two grocery stores.

The first store I went in, the clerks carried on conversations with each other, but I was never acknowledged. I passed by several clerks in the aisles, and there was no smile, no eye contact, nothing, even though I looked at them with a smile. When I went to check out, I smiled and said "hello" to the cashier. No response. I smiled again and wished him a good day as I put the last bag of groceries in my cart. No response.

The second store I went in, I was immediately greeted by a clerk who welcomed me to the store. Another clerk asked me if I needed help finding anything. I walked down an aisle and another clerk smiled and said, "Good morning!" brightly when I walked by. When I went to check out, a clerk was proactively called from the back so I didn't have to wait. The clerk invited me over to his register insisted on taking my very full, heavy basket from my hands, and carried it for me to the checkout counter. He even struck up a conversation. The young lady bagging my groceries offered to carry my bag to my car for me.

The moral of this story is: people remember how you make them feel. Both stores sell similar items. The first store is cheaper than the second store. But the second store didn't just sell groceries. They took time to acknowledge me as more than the person who was there to buy some lettuce, cashews, and apples. They didn't make me feel like a shopper. They made me feel like a person, and that feeling is priceless.

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