Wednesday, October 30, 2013

2 bottles of ginger ale and customer service

There are 2 bottles of ginger ale in my driveway.

In case you're wondering why, read on for a tale of "I-don't-care-or-think-about-my-job-performance" and "Great-customer-service".

We'll start with "I-don't-care-or-think-about-my-job-performance".

I'm at the store, okay let's be really upfront... I was in Market Basket. Not my usual store, but the other one. The bagger, an older gentleman, said "How heavy do you want these bags?".  My reply ..."they can be heavy, but no heavier than what the bag can handle".   I have a large collection of reusable bags in all different materials, shapes & sizes.   He says "What?" and I repeat myself. He either really couldn't hear me, although I can be really loud, or he really didn't care. So he puts 4 2-liter bottles in 1 reusable bag. It was a bag like the blue reusable bags they sell at Market Basket, but it was my newest black American Heart Association bag. Since it was raining out (ugh), mixed with a little snow later on (double ugh) I just repacked my bread when I got to my car (because no one likes squished bread!) and drove to my next stop and then home.

When I get home I take the bag out, put it on my shoulder, and the whole bottom rips out. All 4 bottles land in my dirt driveway. I go to pick up the first bottle of ginger ale and discover it has a hole in the bottle, a small hole, near the bottom. And the bottle sprays me with ginger ale. My pants, my pullover, my vest, my hat, my face and my glasses. Yup, all got sprayed with ginger ale. I pick up 2 bottles and reach for the last one to discover that it also has a hole, and sprays all over my hand. I'm now sticky with ginger ale. Oh, and it's still raining.

So I carry all the groceries in. Put things in the fridge & freezer and wash my hands, face and glasses. The clothes will all go in the laundry. The sun comes out now just to mock me and I realize I'm really, really irritated by this. Because of course, now I have to go out and replace the ginger ale I just lost in the driveway.

So here is where "Great-customer-service" comes in. I call the store.

I reached a really wonderful woman named Julie on the phone. Julie works in Customer Service. And you know what? I think she's really good at her job. She listened to me vent, offered to replace my ginger ale AND replace my damaged bag. She wasn't snarky or rude. She was nice, listened to me vent and offered a solution to make things better. I told her I don't shop at that particular store every week and she said she was putting my story in their little book and I just needed to go to customer service to get my bottles of ginger ale replaced. She said she'd mention it to the supervisor so that they can review with the baggers how many 2-liter bottles of soda should safely go in a reusable shopping bag.

I think she is awesome.

Because quite frankly we all tend to know the cashiers or baggers to avoid when we shop. It's hard when you go in a store that you don't visit often. You just don't know which employee to avoid. I obviously will NOT forget this guy for a long time, and will have to make a special trip over to the other store to get my ginger ale replaced, but Julie at Customer Service totally turned a rather unhappy situation into a tolerable one. That's great customer service.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Looking for a new address

Last February I moved my courses to a permanent home in Greenland, NH.

It was exciting and overwhelming all rolled into one. And it’s been a blast! I love having my own space to hold classes, scheduling has been so easy and I can accommodate last minute one-on-one classes. But I was also so nervous, I had monthly rent to pay and needed to make sure my finances were on track. I was so fortunate to be able to join forces with a colleague who is an Athletic Trainer and we co-share a double office in a small office building. We are both part-time businesses and were able to work out a great schedule that met both of our needs. I was so nervous at first that I might disappoint him if things didn’t work out for me. It has been so rewarding to discover that my classes have been popular and I’ve been busy teaching and using our classroom space.

 But sadly sometimes things don’t often work out as we hope.

My business is flourishing. I am so happy to be able to type that!

Despite needing to reduce my class schedule this fall due to transportation issues. Transportation issues really means I spend my late afternoons and early evenings driving my children to their myriad activities. Because of that I found I wasn’t able to continue offering weeknight classes. Which I was hoping to put back on the calendar now that soccer and marching band seasons will soon be over. But overall I’m teaching more and really enjoying being able to offer more classes.

 As successful as I feel I’m becoming, it has not been the same for my office partner. He still teaches, coaches and works with clients; but he’s gotten busy with family as well. His business is not flourishing, and he needs to step back to regroup. I feel so badly for him. He has been in business a long time and does some amazing work to help children with physical disabilities.

So what does that mean for Coastal CPR & First Aid? It means that I’ll be moving out of my Greenland, NH classroom as of the end of November. I will be looking for a temporary location for my December classes, rescheduling them, or cancelling them. I will be looking for a new permanent home to move into in January. It means my open-enrollment class schedule is on hold until I have arranged a location to hold classes. I am still booking on-site classes and am happy to come to your school, business or organization to provide CPR AED and First Aid classes.

I also need your help!

What I need help with is finding a new home. Preferably within a 20 min drive of the Portsmouth area. I love teaching, but don’t like spending a lot of time driving. I drive enough shuttling my children around and don’t want to add a long office commute to my day. I’m looking to co-share another space or find one on my own with a reasonable rent. I only need about 400 sq. feet, larger is nicer but I’m looking to stay within a budget. An expensive office means I have to raise the cost of my classes and I’m not sure I want to consider doing that just yet. It has to have parking for my students and it would be nice to be in a building with other businesses. Conversely, if someone wants to join me in my current office at Cornerstone Commons in Greenland, NH please email me ASAP!