Running a Tight Ship
Jay Tiposo manages the warehouse and delivery team at Rapport International Furniture on La Brea Blvd. on the outskirts of Beverly Hills. On Friday evening I had the pleasure of meeting with Jay’s complete team. It was at the end of their work day on a Friday night, but they willingly listened to my message, which was to visualize the faces of the satisfied customers who are anticipating the delivery of the furniture they bought. When buried in the warehouse hauling boxes, assembling furniture and loading trucks it’s easy to forget the real reason for it all.
Customers that have been shopping for months finally find the right piece and then suddenly want it NOW! Salespeople, eager to make the sale are tempted to promise the unreasonable and then the burden of that promise lands on the backs of the delivery team to fulfill the promise. These guys are the unsung heroes that sweat all day to make everyone happy.
Sell, Sell, Sell!!!
On Saturday morning I met with the sales team and congratulated them on having the best month ever in a store that’s been there since 1946. Record sales mean record deliveries for a company that does it all in house to assure that it’s done right.
Join the KGB
In Success Made Easy I challenge readers to “Join the KGB” and then jokingly point out that I am not referring to the legendary Russian Terrorist Organization. It simply means to constantly KEEP GETTING BETTER. The better you do, the more difficult it is to do better, but by having that attitude you find ways to do so.
I spent the entire day with the owners and managers plotting and planning on how to KEEP GETTING BETTER - KGB!
The last sale of the day was a $3,500 sofa sectional and coffee table to two Hollywood Hills residents that were shopping late for a Grammy Party on Sunday. They insisted on a Saturday night delivery and got approval from the salesperson. Unreasonable? Yes; Impossible? No.
The warehouse closed at 5:15 PM. At 6 PM the customer called asking when the delivery will be made.
The warehouse, delivery team had gone home for the day, ready to spend Saturday evening with their families. But, when the owner called on Mynor Garcia and Juan Vega, they returned to the warehouse, loaded the truck and headed out to make the delivery.
Going the Extra Mile
It was dark as the owner and I were leaving the building. We heard some cheering and saw the company truck backing into its parking place with Mynor and Juan smiling from ear to ear and giving up high fives as they told us how good it felt to see how happy the customers were to get that furniture. I don’t think that they will ever forget how good they felt, and we talked about it all through dinner and on the ride back to my hotel. YES; it’s all about satisfied customers; they make it all worth while.
Great customer service always pays off. Here is a another recent example of great service and the payoff by and for this great company:
Thank you so much for your service. I know it was all a bit of a hassle for you but it was definitely the right thing and we are extremely pleased with the couch exchange. It turns out that Nick was right, there are color differences as well as texture differences in the sectionals and we could clearly see that when they were all outside in the light. So we went ahead and accepted both sections, willingly. It was that exact floor model we first saw at La Brea, and we actually like the color of this one even better, in our home. We also noticed other slight places of damage on the cushions of the original one (same chase lounge section only), once we had it outside in the light, which leads me to believe that it wasn’t your delivery guys that damaged it in the first place, but someone or something between Italy and your store. I’m sure that is a hard thing to determine. Anyway, we are thrilled with the new one, its color, and we have already purchased two new lamps from you since then (the “Z ” desk lamp and yesterday, the Natuzzi floor lamp that rises up and floats over the couch in a semi-circle). I must tell you that this lamp is BEYOND beautiful with this couch. Alison is over the moon about it, as am I.
WE have Rapport in every room of the house except the kitchen and bathrooms, and again, I thank you for your excellent taste, diversity, and kindness. Alison and I very grateful for all that and will be back in your store shortly to continue furnishing our new home.