Let’s Not Tell Our Sad Stories

Do you remember the scene in Jerry Maguire where Dorothy and Jerry go on their first date and at the restaurant and as they’re getting to know each other, Dorothy says something to the effect of, “let’s not tell our sad stories”?  Well from now on I’ve decided that I’m going to try to live that way.

Don’t get me wrong, I like to complain as much as the next girl, and sometimes venting your frustration is the only way to feel better, but when my sad story fires you up and you tell your frustrating story, soon we’re all angry and watching Wife Swap and Judge Judy and believing that there is no hope left in the world and that all people really act like like the guests on Dr. Phil.

So let’s share our happy stories, shall we?  Today I’d like to tell you about my recent experience at a local car dealership.  Wait, I know what you’re thinking, but this really isn’t a sad story, in fact it’s quite the opposite.

Having had some recent bad experiences at a car dealership that shall remain nameless, I decided to try a new one for a recall repair on my Yaris.  I called Lynch Toyota in Manchester on a Tuesday and was offered an appointment the following Thursday.  “Thursday… like two days from now?” I asked the lady on the phone.  In my experience with said other dealership, a call for a service appointment resulted in at least one week’s wait.  I was already impressed.

Now, I do have to admit that the other dealership’s service area was fairly spartan and their concept of customer service warped, so entering Lynch Toyota this morning, I was low in expectations.  Was I in for a surprise.  The nicest man greeted me at the service area door and instructed me where to go and who to talk to.  I was then directed toward the waiting area where there were several places to sit, free coffee, and magazines!  (What? You’re not impressed?  Well obviously you’ve never been to that other dealership.)

I took a seat and looked around to check the place out.  Not only were there magazines and coffee, there was a TV (tuned to Dr. Phil unfortunately), a separate playroom for kids, free internet, and a quiet room with desks where I could take my computer to sit and work.  Seriously!  I felt like weeping.

As I worked happily at my desk, a nice man came in and asked it anyone required a ride – they have a shuttle service!  I was in awe.  After an hour and a half – less time than they quoted me – I heard my name over the loudspeaker telling me that my car was ready.  I walked back to the service area just in time to greet my car which had just returned from THE CAR WASH.  Can you stand it?  I almost couldn’t.  I wanted to hug everyone in the building.

It’s not much, but the little details like a comfortable waiting area and the two extra minutes it takes to bring my car to be washed go a long, long way to make me and other customers like me happy.  I left there smiling.  I was treated well by people who were genuinely nice, not just rehearsed-line-and-fake-smile nice, and I wasn’t even paying.  This was a recall repair at no cost to me.  Now that’s a service experience worthy of the phrase, “it’s like having a dealer in the family”.

Now it’s your turn.  Tell me your happy story.

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