Russ Darby letter

Published 12:00 am Friday, March 14, 2008

Letter to the editor

Lack of courtesy, service drives customer to shop out of town

I have lived, worked, and shopped in Batesville for all of my life.  When I started my first job at Drake-Mangrum Supermarket (grocery store), Mr Woody, Mr. Alton, and Mr. Calvin told me one rule… “The customer is always right.”  Of course, we all know that the business can’t give away the store but what I see is a gradual reduction of customer appreciation.

I was taught to always be polite and courteous.  By that I mean, always greet the customer with a smile and a “Hi.  How are you today?” If a customer asked you a question, you were to stop what you were doing and get an answer. Even if you were on break; helping a coworker; or even off the clock. You were expected (no, required) to smile and say “Thank you” as a customer left. Finally, we were expected to invite the customer to come again.

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What has happened to my world? Companies seem to have the attitude that they are so good that I have no choice but shop with them. Employees have no loyalty to companies or customers because they only make minimum wage. (Sorry, if you work hard to make money for the company, you will make more. I was raised to be the best employee possible regardless of pay.)  

Why am I starting to shop more out of town? I am tired of being treated rudely, unwelcome, and unappreciated. Sorry Batesville businesses, if you are worried about money then start by worrying about the source of that money… your customers!

Russ Darby,