Too much of a good thing

powells-bookmarksStopped by Powell’s Books the other day for a few items a book the other day, Alone on the Wall by Alex Hannold (I highly recommend it if you enjoy outdoor sports writing) and as usual, I ended up with a few other things.  With my three books, three magazines and a Clark chocolate bar, I approached the cashier.

The cashier was very pleasant offering a warm hello and engaging me in banter as she began to ring up my purchase.  As she scanned the first book, she placed a bookmark inside of the book.

“That’s ok.  I don’t need any more Powell’s bookmarks,” I interjected.

“Okay,” she responded as she scanned the second book and placed another bookmark inside that book.  I just looked on dumbfounded but then I realized that they cashiers are likely instructed to place a bookmark in every book.  So I politely added, “I will not need anymore bookmarks.”

“Okay,” she smiled and responded again.  She scanned the third book and…..she placed another bookmark in the book. I just watched in mild amazement and annoyance.

Next came the first magazine.  I figured that they will not put a bookmark in a magazine.  People usually do not use bookmarks in magazines.  Scanned and bookmarked as were the second and third magazine.

She again smiled at me and told me the total.  I quickly paid for my items and headed out the door.  When I got home, I realized that I was the lucky recipient of seven bookmarks in total.

Teachable Moment

When a customer makes a simple request of you, do not smile and agree and then not do what was asked of you.  If a request is made, smile, agree and then fulfill the request.

In this situation, the cashier was probably doing as instructed and automatically placed a bookmark in each book with out thinking. (I have made purchases in the past without receiving any bookmarks.)

I made a simple enough request to fulfill, she just did not listen to what I said twice and continued on in her rote manner,



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