Today is Two post Tuesday! This story is not to complain but to show how what’s important to a company starts from the top. I wanted to share a lesson a member (ok, me) of The Learning Club learned yesterday. I brought my son’s broken phone to the Apple store and waited in line to find out how long the wait line would be to get it fixed. Yes, you read that right. I had to wait in line for the wait time. I had put in enough quarters in the parking meter for 1 hour because his phone was part of an extended warranty. I mistakenly thought I’d just pick up a new phone if his couldn’t be fixed immediately. I knew I was in trouble when there wasn’t anyone at the door to greet me and direct me for some assistance. After waiting in a not-well-formed line, I discover that I can’t talk to anyone for 3 1/2 to 4 hours because I was a walk-in. The next appt. time was the next day in the afternoon when I went to get my son. I was welcome to come back the next day at 10am and see how long that walk in wait time would be (usually it’s shorter in the am). Wanting to get it done yesterday, I went to get the kids from school, took them home, had my husband finish with the dinner (thank you crockpot), and headed back out the 30 minute drive to Apple. Once I was seen (though that’s another I’m looking for a male Eddie vs. a female Edie story!), it turns out if the phone had liquid damage, the extended warranty just means that you pay $79. I paid the fee and got a chance to pick the brain of the assistant while the new phone was loading.
In talking to the assistant, I learned that in the days of Steve Jobs, I would have been handed a new phone immediately. Steve Jobs, even though you may not agree with how he operated, valued a customer’s time more than anything else in the experience. He wanted to make sure you had a quality product of course, but your time was invaluable to him, and he made sure that you were not inconvenienced. If the phone had a cracked screen, here’s a new one. Let’s make sure you are happy and that you didn’t have to spend your time getting happy.
This is an excellent example where one person’s values – his customer’s time – shined forth in a huge company. They say it all flows from the top down, but usually the examples are negative with this theory. Here’s an example where the experience of making the customer happy was of the utmost importance. Apple walked the talk. Make sure what you do matches with your values. Do you value family time? Make the time then to spend fun times with your family, and show them they are a priority. Do you value honesty in others? Make sure you are always telling the truth. Figure out what’s important to you, and make sure your money, your time, and your actions are exact matches.