Give a Dog a Bone

One of the great adventures for my dog Malcolm and I was to go through the drive through window at the bank.  It was a win-win for both of us.  I got money and he got a Milk-Bone.

Capitalizing on the connection that the way to the dog lover’s heart is to be kind to her dog was a brilliant marketing move.  Now I only I frequent banks that hand out bones, even though my dog is no longer with me. I like to believe that kind of attention to detail carries over to my finances.

There are so many things that don’t cost much but pay huge dividends in the happiness department.  How much does it really cost not to roll your eyes?  How much time does it really take to hold the elevator while someone steps in?  How much effort is really required to express your gratitude to someone going the extra 1/4 mile?

The sweet thing about behaving in ways that are kind and considerate is that you get to experience the good as well.  Who doesn’t get a little happiness boost by doing something guaranteed to make somebody’s day? 

Today I spent a grueling hour at the end of an already long day talking with customer service people. Remember how last week I said Sears had excellent customer service?  Let’s amend that to satisfactory customer service.  

After being transferred to five different people around the country and beyond, I finally was referred to the manager at the local store who told me he could do what I requested.  Apparently the others could or would not.

I have to remind myself it is not the fault of the customer service agents that customers are asked so many automated questions and left on hold indefinitely.  They all apologize and say please and thank you as they slaughter your name.  I suspect after one customer complaint I’d be ready to quit, let alone an 8 hour shift of continuous complaints.  

Despite my growing frustration, I made a point to treat each of these individuals with respect.  I’m fairly certain I can sound like an inarticulate lunatic when I get wound up and worn down by policies that are anything but easy to comprehend or consumer friendly.  So while I couldn’t promise to give them all high fives on the customer satisfaction surveys that are sure to follow, I did try to use the words please and thank you while asserting my position.

Maybe we’re all just overwhelmed by how difficult it is to do things that by all accounts should be easy.  Although Staples likes to espouse the easy button  as the way to do business, Bob suffered a brutal bout of badgering with them over a fax machine he bought online but did not get delivered. 

It feels like the saying, ” The customer is always right” has shifted to, “The customer is often crucified.”

That’s why it’s so nice when someone gives a dog a bone.  We know what it takes to make someone happy.  We know that it doesn’t have to be hard or cost a lot or even take a lot of planning.  

Why not carry extra treats in your pocket or up your sleeve?  The wagging on your part as well as theirs is well worth it.

PS –  I so appreciate the “bones” you’ve given me by spending your time reading and responding to these posts.  Consider this round of dog bones on the house!

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