Friday, January 11, 2013

Is Bigger Better?

As the President of Box Brothers Companies, I am often in the proverbial hot seat when it comes to issues
with personnel, customers or in the shipping business, matters to do with shipping damage, delays, as well
as all kinds of other issues.   Just part of running a robust and diverse company with multiple locations and a
very strong commitment to our customers, for the last and only 27 years of since our beginning in 1985.

Of course, with hundreds of packages shipped daily from our retail stores, and dozens of LTL shipments
being shipped daily to our crating services, where this week, we will complete and deliver over 100 crates
to our respective customers---there are bound to be some customers or employees who have issues that
go no further than my desk.

It is important today, to be accessible, as that is the one GINOMIS trait that all of the larger well to do firms
have in common, no matter what their industry segment is, that no one in senior management will purposely
engage any of their customers.  Ever.

While there are exceptions, if I were to be able to give out “academy awards for bad service or a Lip Service Award”
(which means they all talk service but do not talk to their customers), one would have to go to American Express, for
having the biggest phone room without any supervisor ever being present, let alone any corporate officer, as that
info is more than top secret, I know cause I tried…..but UPS wins one of those awards, so does Home Depot, and how
about Avis and Hertz and United Airlines, who is supposed employee owned……

On the contrary, when a customer has an issue, they want to take it to as high a place as they can, so they can
communicate how they feel to be one of your customers.   What I do not get, at all, today, is how they all get
away with it.   I think these firms, who undoubtedly use focus groups, but why imitate what you have already,
customers and why are you afraid to speak to them?   Again, why people patronize these firms when they have
options to patronize firms who are smaller and for whom, your purchase means so much more than just about
anything else.

Today, I got a letter sent to me by a customer in the top (upstate) corner of New York.   One of our managers in
the Bay area, received a letter from this customer after our efforts to get her a set of antique chairs, to her remote
residence, was something we undertook for a customer we did not know prior.   This customer was so amazed at how
personable and friendly and committed to get her this small shipment, at a cost less than any van line in America could
or wanted to do………that when she got the chairs—and even though they were purchased online and when she finally
got them---they turned out to not work for the area she intended them to go----she wrote to us that it did not matter
that they chairs would not work as she intended them to, but that our service and our outreach by our manager, Connie.
was so great, it did not matter, cause now, our customer, has a friend in the shipping industry.   A fan too.

I tell this story as it helps define what we do at Box Brothers and why how we do things, makes all the difference to our
customers and that is why each and every one of our customer, rich or poor, small or big, are crucial to our ongoing success,
and I would not have it any other way.   Any one of our daily thousand customers a day, can call me anytime, or any of our
managers, employees or staff, as customer service, the real customer service is alive and well here at Box Brothers, as that
is who we come to work for each and every day, and to the rest of the world, spend your money where it counts as true
value comes when someone cares about you as a customer and your needs, you are not just a footnote on a balance sheet
and you are not just a number.   To us at Box Brothers, you are the reason we are here.   May we help you?

Mark S. Frydman
Box Brothers Corp.

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