Several months ago Patti and I were having dinner with some dear friends in Franklin. During our meal, I noticed my friend was wearing a pair of great looking boots. I commented on how good they looked and asked about their comfort. Come to find out these were not just any boots. They were custom fitted and hand made. He asked me if I had ever worn boots to which I replied I had not. My friend then said he would like to buy me a pair of custom made boots, but I would have to go to Dallas in order to be fitted. (When I found out what a pair of boots, especially custom boots cost I was first, blown away, and second, most grateful for a friend willing to give me that kind of a gift). Well, that was months ago and, honestly, I had forgotten all about it until I had to make a trip to Dallas this week. I called my friend back home to make sure he still wanted to do this, get the name of the boot maker and then made an appointment for a fitting. Now let me just say that today I learned more about about boots than I ever knew was possible .
But I also learned a valuable life lesson about taking care of people. From the moment I walked in the door of M.L. Leddy’s (boot maker), I was made to feel like the most important person in Ft. Worth. The service went beyond friendly; it was extraordinary! First, there were introductions by name of everyone who had a part in the process. The lady up front walked me to the fitting room and introduced me to Raz, who would, for the next 90 minutes, measure my feet about every way you could measure a foot. He traced my feet into the pages of an old-fashioned bank ledger and assigned me a page andbook number where all my measurements are recorded forever. I joined the ranks of 250,000 customers that have included presidents, rock stars and royalty since 1922.
It was the kind of experience that their website promised, “a welcomed respite from the world’s hurried and impersonal pace.” Conversation was like friends getting together for lunch, lots of fun, lots of laughter. Attention to detail was unbelievable to the adjustment of the arch support in the left boot by 1/16th of an inch. Raz had me to try on more than a dozen pairs of boots in order to keep tweaking to make sure I got just the perfect fit. Now keep in mind that my boots won’t be ready for another 10 months!
When we were finished, I walked out the door almost laughing about the whole experience. Wow! While most people in our society over promise and under deliver, I had just had the service experience of a lifetime (I called my very gracious friend back home just to thank him for the experience)!
As I have thought about this experience all day, it has really made me think about our “customer service” at TPC. Do we make people feel that we really appreciate their presence? When they leave our service do they feel like their investment of time was worth it? Did we over promise and under deliver or did we provide the kind of experience we advertise? I want to go home and take a fresh look at the details of how we do ministry. I want every person who walks in our doors to have the best experience that we can humanly provide. I have a new determination to “Give ‘Em the Boot.
P.S. I am looking forward to receiving and wearing my new boots almost as much as I enjoyed visiting the great folks at M.L. Leddy’s.