Saturday

Review Day: Starbucks

Yes. I am really writing a review about Starbucks. You've heard of it, right? If not, then please shut your computer down right now and head to your nearest Starbucks. It's a coffee shop. You'll spend approximately an arm and a leg for one cup of coffee. Still, I think you'll enjoy the experience.

Why?

Starbucks has consistently had the best customer service I have ever seen. And that's saying a lot. Especially in today's, "Yes I know you're paying me, but I don't have to even smile customer service world".

I just feel that any company that is willing to go repeatedly above and beyond deserves recognition for their excellence. There are few other companies that would consistently fall in this category. Just as I'm the first to complain if a company barely does what it's required (if at all), I'm also the first to thank a company for good customer service.

Why now?

Because a week ago it had taken us 3 hours to drive what should have been a one hour drive. It took this long because of a solid sheet of ice covering the highway. When an announcement was made that the highway was closed indefinitely just ahead of us because of numerous accidents, we pulled off the road. When we pulled off the road, we wanted a clean bathroom to use, we wanted a place where we could hook up our laptop and see if road &/or weather conditions were any better the furthur North we went. We wanted someplace where we could comfortably hang out for a couple of hours if necessary...without sighs, eye rolls, and comments about how we should leave...so other customers can come in and take their abuse.

We were very happy when we saw a Starbucks up ahead. We had always found cleanliness, ready internet access, and pleasant "baristas" at Starbucks before so we felt certain we'd find the same again today. True to form, Starbucks delivered...and all for one cup of coffee. (Which we soon learned wasn't even a necessity...unless you're my husband.)

While we were there around 20 other people were in and out with the same situation we had. Some asked to use the phone and were asked if they needed a phone book. Some asked us for help finding conditions where they were going. We gladly helped. Several came in to use the restroom, have a seat, and regroup before figuring out what to do next. Only about half of those who walked in the door actually purchased anything. However, I can almost guarantee you that they will be back...and they'll be happy to spend their money there...based on the service they received.

What we found were Starbucks employees who offered to call the local Sheriff to inquire about the closed highway and confirm free passage around on another highway. What we found were employees ready to give directions to different locations so people could avoid the blocked highway, get to the airport, or arrive safely at their destination. What we found were employees who offered to help weary travelers in any way they could...regardless of how much money might be in their pockets.

As we thanked them and started on our way, they asked if we'd decided to stay or try to go around the closure. (Which remained closed for over half the day.) We told them we'd decided to get a hotel and head out in the morning. We were invited back for a hot cup of coffee to get us on our way in the morning.

And we were happy to take them up on their offer.

Thank you, Starbucks, for a job well done...again.

-Me

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