Good customer service

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Bylo Selhi
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Good customer service

Post by Bylo Selhi » 19 Mar 2007 22:02

We have a thread on Bad customer service so it's only fair to start one on good deeds.

I took a case of empties back to Brick Brewery today. As it happened they were out of my favourite Brick brew, Connors Best Bitter, so I picked up a 6-pack of Pilsener. At the checkout as the clerk was running my credit card I mentioned how disappointed I was that they didn't have any Connors. He cancelled the transaction, apologized for the out-of-stock, said they were brewing more as we spoke, and told me the Pilsener would be on the house.

[Contrast with the Oligopolists' Beer Store where the only reaction I'd have got would be a disinterested shrug.]
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Post by uhoh » 19 Mar 2007 22:20

spouse was snowboarding at Blue Mountain last week when a binding broke on only his third run of the day - disappointed at having driven 3 hours with gas at 1.05/l, he stopped in at one of the "village" shops, and the guy called around other shops in town to see if anyone had a spare part - nope. So spouse got in the van to come home and on a whim stopped at a shop on the outskirts of town. The owner said that he knows the rep personally, the guy lives in the area and within 10 mins the rep was handing my spouse another set of (better) bindings to use until they can replace his gratis. Shipping them to our local ski shop. Nice, eh? I thought it was great :D and spouse got a full day and evening of snowboarding.
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Post by Arby » 20 Mar 2007 10:18

I gave TD Canada Trust a number of post-dated cheques to deposit to my account while I was out of the country. When I returned, I noticed one of the cheques had not been deposited. After some searching, TD said the missing cheque was lost. They suggested I tell the issuer to stop payment on the original cheque and issue a new cheque, and they would reimburse the issuer for any stop payment costs. I was annoyed at the inconvenience, but the cheque was for less than $100, so I wasn't too concerned. I was pleasantly surprised when, a few days later, I received a letter of apology from the branch manager and a $50 gift certificate to a store of my choice.

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Post by Pickles » 20 Mar 2007 10:28

When I moved to my current house, the previous owners had left a Rubbermaid Roughneck garbage can which was missing the axle and wheels.
Because it couldn't stand up without the wheels it was pretty useless but the garbagemen wouldn't take it away. I bought a new Roughneck for myself and used it for two years until the garbagemen broke a wheel off, tossing the can up the driveway.

When I called Rubbermaid to ask how to get a replacement wheel, I mentioned that I had another can missing the complete axle/wheel set. They sent me two kits by courier at no charge.
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Post by AltaRed » 20 Mar 2007 10:38

While in the Houston area, took our old minivan in to the local Jiffy Lube shop for its annual mechanical/safety and emissions inspection stickers. It failed the emissions test with the likely suspect an oxygen sensor.

Then took the van about 400 metres over to the Auto ProCare repair shop. [Law prohibits the same shop doing both inspections and repairs for obvious reasons]. The shop replaced the sensor and then drove it about 5 miles to their own emissions test facility to be sure it would pass the emissions test....before taking it back to Jiffy Lube to have the emissions re-tested and sticker installed. ProCare did all this without asking...and without charge beyond the repair of the oxygen sensor.

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Post by kcowan » 20 Mar 2007 12:58

We went through a period when we used Molly Maid. It was a disaster. They would wash lightbulbs when they were hot and then not replace them. Once they had fallen against the shower door, breaking the bracket that slides along the bottom track.

I had purchased two sets of the shower doors at Home Depot and they could not help. But they gave me the 800 number for the manufacturer in Chicago. The manufacturer apologized that they did not sell the brackets separately because they never break in normal use. But they shipped me 6 of them free of charge.
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Re: Good customer service

Post by Jo Anne » 20 Mar 2007 13:23

Bylo Selhi wrote:[Contrast with the Oligopolists' Beer Store where the only reaction I'd have got would be a disinterested shrug.]
We've always had extremely good service at the Picton Beer Store - perhaps because we're such good customers. 8)

They always ask if I want stuff carried out for me, and the rare time I've had a complaint, I am more than adequately compensated with freebies.

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Post by brucecohen » 20 Mar 2007 13:31

The best hardware store in Canada is the Home Hardware run by the Pilgrim family in Sunderland, Ontario.

In a relatively small space, they manage to stock at least one unit of almost everything in the Home Hardware catalogue. If they don't have it, they get it delivered in their next weekly shipment and phone to tell you it's in. If they don't sell it, they'll tell you who does and offer advice on what to look for and how much to pay.

As they ring up the items you're buying for a project, they double-check that you have everything you need either there on the counter or at home. They don't complain when you buy extra just-in-case-I-mess-up parts even though most of that time that stock comes right back for full refund. Indeed, they encourage the practice to save their rural customers an extra trip.

Most importantly, they know how to fix anything than can be fixed, cheerfully provide tips and advice for free and on quiet days will gladly spend a half-hour or more brainstorming about possible remedies for perplexing problems and demonstrating how to do what needs to be done. They also provide referrals to the vast army of tradesmen who deal with them and I've never been less than delighted by those they've recommended.

On top of all that, John Pilgrim and his grown son George are volunteer firefighters and insist on giving everyone who buys a fire extinguisher or smoke detector a thorough briefing on the item's proper use, placement and maintenance.

They've told me that some of their customers drive more than an hour to deal with them -- past several Home Depots, Ronas and other competitors.

It's so pleasant to deal with merchants who really like running a store and understand what customer service is all about.

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Post by millergd » 20 Mar 2007 18:21

BruceCohen wrote:The best hardware store in Canada is the Home Hardware run by the Pilgrim family in Sunderland, Ontario.
Home Hardware as a company is truly amazing. Any one of their hardware stores must be 1/50th the size of a Home Depot, but I have yet to find something that they don't carry. They never let me down, and I don't spend 15 minutes trodding up and down every mega-aisle looking for some hockey-helmet type wearing an orange apron.

I consciously have to remind myself to avoid the big box hardware stores and that smaller square footage doesn't mean smaller service.

~millergd~

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Post by kcowan » 21 Mar 2007 11:36

Another advantage to Home Hardware is that if you happen to purchase one of the more obscure items, the price is what it was selling for when they originally stocked it. Often this is 20-30% below HD.

Always check the prices on all items if they are individually ticketed. I search for the lower tickets then I mention it at checkout. They always honour the ticketed price. Sometimes, when I have one old one and one new one, they charge the older price for both.

I just hope they can stay in business!
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Post by Bylo Selhi » 21 Mar 2007 11:44

kcowan wrote:Another advantage to Home Hardware...
And one more advantage is that they now give an Aeroplan mile for every $2 in merchandise.

I think the reason why HH stays in business is because each store is locally owned. In addition to more personalized service, unlike the big chains like HD and Reno most HHs have their own local culture and even specialization. Here in K-W there are several HH stores and each is different in its own way. Often I choose the HH I go to based on what I need to get rather than which one is closer.
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Post by blonde » 21 Mar 2007 12:19

BruceCohen wrote:The best hardware store in Canada is the Home Hardware run by the Pilgrim family in Sunderland, Ontario.

In a relatively small space, they manage to stock at least one unit of almost everything in the Home Hardware catalogue. If they don't have it, they get it delivered in their next weekly shipment and phone to tell you it's in. If they don't sell it, they'll tell you who does and offer advice on what to look for and how much to pay.

As they ring up the items you're buying for a project, they double-check that you have everything you need either there on the counter or at home. They don't complain when you buy extra just-in-case-I-mess-up parts even though most of that time that stock comes right back for full refund. Indeed, they encourage the practice to save their rural customers an extra trip.

Most importantly, they know how to fix anything than can be fixed, cheerfully provide tips and advice for free and on quiet days will gladly spend a half-hour or more brainstorming about possible remedies for perplexing problems and demonstrating how to do what needs to be done. They also provide referrals to the vast army of tradesmen who deal with them and I've never been less than delighted by those they've recommended.

On top of all that, John Pilgrim and his grown son George are volunteer firefighters and insist on giving everyone who buys a fire extinguisher or smoke detector a thorough briefing on the item's proper use, placement and maintenance.

They've told me that some of their customers drive more than an hour to deal with them -- past several Home Depots, Ronas and other competitors.

It's so pleasant to deal with merchants who really like running a store and understand what customer service is all about.
WOW!!! THAT is a darn good story.

BTW, what Canada needs is still more 'believers'.

BTW2, trust me, believe me.

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Post by biker » 21 Mar 2007 16:02

Yeah I have to vote for HH as well.I bought a snowblower a couple of years ago from the store manager who knows my name.Once I got it home I had trouble getting it started and returned to the store to tell the manager . He asked if I would be home in an hour so he could drop by and check it out.When he arrived he had loaded another smowblower in the pick-up in case mine was defective.It turned out that I wasn't following instruction properly so a replacement was not necessary but I did appreciate how my issue was handled . Also I really appreciate staff who try to remember a regular customers name.
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Post by kcowan » 22 Mar 2007 14:52

millergd wrote:Home Hardware as a company is truly amazing.
Working Canada wrote:About Home Hardware Stores Limited
One of Canada's most remarkable retail success stories, Home Hardware Stores Limited is the country's largest independent hardware, lumber and building materials and furniture retailer with more than 1,000 stores across Canada.

Home Hardware is unique in that it is 100% Dealer-owned. Home Dealers are proud members of the communities where they live and work.

The cooperative includes the Home Hardware, Home Building Centre, Home Hardware Building Centre and Home Furniture banners.

Strong customer service is the hallmark of Home Hardware stores and each Dealer works to build a helpful, knowledgeable, customer-focused team of people who are excited about home improvement and helping customers live better lives through the products they sell and advice they can provide.
Good old-fashioned customer service!
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Post by dakota » 22 Mar 2007 15:08

My wife and I had breakfast in the Zellers restauraunt in Trenton this morning and were served by the manageress Katherine. She was on the floor by herself but still took time to chat, smile and be very pleasant, she also made sure that my eggs were just the way I like them "I can take them back and change them" For me this adds a lot to a meal and I left the place after leaving a hefty gratuity and with a smile on my face. She made my day!
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Post by Dennis » 22 Mar 2007 15:22

I've had good service any time it involved a Costco purchase. Shorter time frame problems have been dealt with promptly with no questions directly at the store and two other items were dealt with by me directly through the manufacturer.

In the first case, an office chair had a weld break on the stool (no comments pls) and the US manufacturer couriered a new base on the evidence of an e mail attatched photo.

In the second case, a 10x20 shelter had the vinyl roof disintegrate after 3 or 4 years (UV?) and the Vancouver distributor couriered a new one based on nothing more than my word on the telephone.

Both were within the prescribed warranty period but I suspect that the Costco contract may have (at least partially) been responsible for the good customer relations involved in the last two mentions.
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Post by tedster » 23 Mar 2007 14:57

The other day I was awiiting in line at La Source a.k.a. Radio Shack. There were two elderly ladies in line before me. One was in a wheelchair and was buying a remote control. The clerk asked if she wanted him to install the batteries (which she did) then he replaced it in the clear plastic packaging, at which point she scolded him and told him that she was paralysed and could not open it. He quietly picked it up and opened the packaging for her. The other old lady had some sort of display device which she said was no longer working and she wanted to buy a replacement. He took it, checked the batteries, gave her some ''used'' batteries from a box on the counter and gave it back to her, all no charge. I commented on his excellent service and then found out that you can post your comments on their web site. Which I did. There are still nice people out there.

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Post by worthy » 23 Mar 2007 22:42

I had two bays on a new house finished in EIFS. Installing them during cold and rain resulted in them falling apart before the home was finished. As the contractor was paid cash and there was no paperwork, I never expected to see him again.

To my absolute amazement, he sent over a crew and completely redid his work. From both his broken English and his ethical commitment, he was obviously a newcomer.
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Post by kcowan » 24 Mar 2007 11:14

We had an Eastern European drywaller do our basement. On the back of his business card it said:

"The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten."

I made copies and handed them to my customers and friends. It eventually made it onto a plaque presented by a customer to one of my associates.
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Post by Triumph » 24 Mar 2007 12:40

I saw this sign on the wall of a feed mill office.

"Good oats cost a fair price. Ones that have gone through the horse are a little cheaper"

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Post by scomac » 05 Aug 2007 19:57

I started a thread in General Finance entitled Contacting Corporate Officers. While I didn't indicate at the time, this was an issue with defective golf clubs purchased at Golftown.

One week ago, my youngest son purchased a Founders Club driver with money he had saved from summer work. The initial club was damaged the first time he used it and was subsequently replaced under warranty. At the time, we were informed that there would be no further warranty on the replacement club. Three days later the replacement club broke. I decided that despite what a sales associate had told me at the store, warranty was going to be honoured on the replacement. So, with that in mind, I contacted Founders Club directly (both the CEO and Canadian Sales Manager).

After a couple of e-mails back and forth (on a holdiay weekend no less), we went to our local Golftown today and my son was fitted with a brand new more expensive model that was customized to suit him at no cost. In addition, the store manager provided him with a complimentary sand wedge as compensation for our aggrevation. Further to that, the Founders club rep. is sending along a couple a hats to boot.

Needless to say, I'm mightily impressed at the lengths that Golftown and Founders Club have gone to in an effort to rectify a problem and have satisfied customers as a result.
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Post by Shakespeare » 05 Aug 2007 20:03

So why do they sell a product that breaks almost immediately?
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Post by augustabound » 05 Aug 2007 20:08

Scomac, I see the conditions at Chedoke haven't changed eh? Tees and fairways still hard as rocks? lol

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Post by scomac » 05 Aug 2007 20:19

Shakespeare wrote:So why do they sell a product that breaks almost immediately?
I don't have an answer for you Shakes. Founders Club is a smaller manufacturer of golf equipment targetted at the cost conscience golfer. I suspect that most of their product is built off-shore, so quality control might be an issue, at least it seemed to be with the model of club we had problems with. Considering the lengths that both the manufacturer and retailer went to to insure our satisfaction, I would suggest that our experience was not commonplace.
"On what principle is it, that when we see nothing but improvement behind us, we are to expect nothing but deterioration before us?"
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Post by scomac » 05 Aug 2007 20:25

augustabound wrote:Scomac, I see the conditions at Chedoke haven't changed eh? Tees and fairways still hard as rocks? lol
I haven't played there so I can't comment. Where I have played (with the exception of Pinelands), has been in atypcially rough shape due to the drought. One thing is for sure, you don't want to hit too many fat shots or you'll be replacing a lot of shafts... :roll:
"On what principle is it, that when we see nothing but improvement behind us, we are to expect nothing but deterioration before us?"
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