It all started when I took my mom’s circa-1990 cell phone into Radio Shack at Willow Lawn to see if they had a new battery for it. Come to find out they can handle AT&T service upgrades and it made more sense to just get mom a new phone. Fran handled the transaction which took about 45 minutes and several phone calls to AT&T – all while also helping other customers and answering the Radio Shack store phone.

She was polite, efficient and most helpful. Knowing she works on commission I felt bad she’d spent so much time with me for no material income. I left with mom’s new phone, thanked Fran for her helpfulness and headed to Kroger to grab some chips. I thought about sending an email to Radio Shack to compliment her, but thought it would probably never get to her store manager or supervisor. At Kroger, the store manager warmly greeted me, pointed me to the Stacy’s Pita Chips and as I walked past the flower department I knew what I should do. For $10 I grabbed a lovely yellow spring bouquet and headed to the checkout.

I popped back into Radio Shack and Fran was on the phone with a customer – I put the flowers on the counter in front of her, smiled, mouthed “thank you” and headed for the door. I could hear her male co-workers expressing their surprise and delight. Fran called out thanks to me, saying “that’s the nicest thing anyone’s ever done for me.” I smiled and thanked her again and walked out of the store.

I can promise I’ll be back to Willow Lawn’s Radio Shack whenever I need anything remotely electronic, and I’ll make sure Fran’s there. More importantly, I can promise that both she and I are going to feel good all day – Fran for being rewarded for what I’m sure she’d say was “just doing her job.” And me for doing something nice for someone who understands what customer service is all about.

45 minutes in Radio Shack, $10 at Kroger, and smiles all around. Isn’t that what life, and customer service, is really all about?