29 August, 2018

Customer Service!

We've only recently returned from yet another epic road trip-- this one was loaded with adventures and firsts for me; but that's another post for another day.  Today I want to focus on customer service; you know, that concept that we all want to experience on the positive end but usually don't respond to unless it is negative. Sadly, there are many too many bad customer service experiences anymore!  This is a different story, it's all good; this story is what the definition of excellent customer service is all about. While we were away I shopped for fabric for Gregory's Quilt* at each and every quilt shop along the way (there were many!). On the 17th of August we found ourselves driving across Kansas and stopped in Hays at Quilt Cottage Co. Here I found two pieces of fabric to add to my collection for this project (the plaid pictured in the large triangles of those shaded 4-patch blocks, and the dark green triangles of those flying geese-to-be units). When we returned home a week ago I began cutting out the quilt and piecing all the sub-units for the main blocks. Somehow, I mis-cut over half of the large triangles for those shaded 4-patches, instead I had erroneously cut up that pretty plaid fabric into the smaller triangles needed for the flying geese! (Who, ME???) I wasn't in a total panic; not yet. I kept thinking that maybe I had enough and that I had caught my mistake in the nick of time. That did not prove to be the case. I recalled being in that shop where the fabric was purchased and remembered being asked at the time if I wanted to register my email address with them, just in case I needed to contact them for more fabric after I returned home. Of course, I declined; no, that never happens to me! (ARRGGH!) When the seriousness of my error became apparent, the day before yesterday, I was left with no identifying characteristics of this fabric (I had cut off and discarded the selvages the week before, they were long gone!) other than a photo. I also had the business card from the shop. I Facebook messaged the photo to the shop and called them on the phone (dialing was difficult with my fingers crossed!) at the same time, hoping against hope that they still had some. Kari, one of the owners, answered. As I described my situation she simultaneously looked up the photograph and asked if I had registered my email address with them. "No", I replied, "I didn't see the need at the time"; we both laughed. She was quickly and efficiently able to locate the fabric there in their shop, and find my purchase too, through their electronic inventory system. She cheerfully told me that she would be happy to cut the yardage that day and get it in the mail as soon as she could. I was grateful and relieved (plus, I ordered a little bit more than in needed, just in case!), I assured Kari that she had just saved my life! A few minutes later she FB messaged me to let me know that it was already being mailed. Wow! Just WOW!! Is that the epitome of customer service or what? Isn't this what every Quilt Shop, every store, every business, should strive for? Yes, of course it is! And to that end-- from now on, whenever I encounter EXCELLENT customer service I am going to publicize it. I will make it a point to let the business know and all of my friends too. Top-notch service deserves all the recognition that it can get. Join me. Where have you received service that is above-and-beyond? Let's promote those positive experiences!

*So, back to Gregory's Quilt. I blogged about it here back in February. At that time I was planning to make it totally scrappy with blues, greens and tans. As time wore on I realized that I couldn't cobble together enough scraps to make this look at all planned or cohesive. I recognized the fact that even for someone as addicted to scraps, and in love with multi-fabric quilts, as I am; there came a point where it was okay to give myself permission to go shopping (away from my bins) for what I needed (plus, there will be left-overs, which means-- MORE SCRAPS!).

Now, all of the blocks will look like they do in this layout; with natural-colored linen sashing between the blocks and blue cornerstones. This will be his bed quilt. 

Because this quilt, his Picture Play quilt that has been on his bed for the past five years, is growing threadbare and wearing out. It is currently undergoing binding replacement at Chez Goddneedle. You can see the new fabric for the binding folded over the top in this photo. Nothing, not one thing, gives this quiltmaker more joy than knowing that a quilt is well-worn and well-loved.💗

It's why I quilt.
Life is Good!


Karen - Quilts...etc. said...

it is great to hear of good customer service at a quilt shop - I have been in several that I will never go back in again due to their lack of friendliness !! who wants to go in a shop where they won't even look up and say hello so it is always good to hear of one that is good - I might be going through Kansas soon and will look and see where they are

ladygem4 said...

Qiilt Cottage is a wonderful store. I shop there whenever I get to Hays. Nice to hear some positive comments! Too many of our independent stores are vanishing.

Quiltdivajulie said...

I agree about sharing GOOD whenever we can. DH stopped and complimented a store manager last week and she was utterly dumbfounded as she is typically bombarded with petty complaints.

Elita@Busy Needle Quilting said...

I make it a point to comment ESPECIALLY when the customer service is good. I know there are plenty of bad experiences going on out there and those are the stories we often remember but I want to highlight those random acts of kindness in the hopes of catching people performing them more often! Be the change we want to see! :-)

KaHolly said...

Yay! I always applaud good customer service, because as you stated, it isn’t practiced everywhere. How lucky you were. His quilt I’d going to be stunning! I’ve recently gifted a few quilts and it is my hopes that they are well loved and used to the point that in the future I am asked to repair them! My daughter's high school graduation/dorm room quilt had to be tended to numerous times, and finally had to be retired because the fabrics were literally shredding. That symbolized twenty years of loving the quilt her mom made especially for her to have when she left home and needed to be coddled...and filled my heart with that 'knowing' kind of mom love. It has been replaced, and I’m pleased to say the new one is being used to death already!

Shasta Matova said...

It is always nice to get great customer service. I'm glad you found the fabric that you wanted and that the shop made it so easy. And how wonderful that the quilt you had gifted was really well used.

Janet said...

How nice to read your positive comments! When we lived in Kansas years ago, Hays was a frequent shopping destination although I’m sure the Quilt Cottage was not there then. Happy you had a positive experience!
Looking forward to read about your recent road trip!

rondiquilts said...

I've met some of the nicest people working in quilt shops. Fortunately its been rare that I have had poor service in one, which is good since quilt shops are our "happy place".
I can't wait to hear about your trip. I loved following along with the last big trip you took out west. Looking forward to hearing all about it.


Janet O. said...

I commend you on noting excellent service. We need to let people know when they get it right, not just when they get it wrong.
Looking forward to hearing about the road trip. :)

Sewing Sue said...

I work in a small quilt shop and believe me, we worker bees appreciate the praise when we deserve it. We do hear the 'gripes', no worries about that. The other day, on a really slow midweek morning, a lady berated me because I was the only one in the shop and she thought that was 'ridiculous' (her word). Never mind that she was the only customer at the time! Good job on recognizing great customer service and responding to it. Thank you on behalf of all good quilt shop employees!