retail news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

A shout-out this morning to Jacci Baker, who works at the deli counter in a Lake Mary, Florida, Publix supermarket located on International Parkway.

Mrs. Content Guy and I were in there the other day to pick up some stuff to bring to a friend’s house, and Ms. Baker may have created the single best service deli experience I’ve ever had.

She was friendly, and insisted that we try every item we ordered, just to make sure we liked the flavor and the thickness of the slicing. She up-sold us on some ham, by saying it was by far her favorite ham in the case and had the best flavor. And she created a sense that of all the people in the store at the moment, we were her highest priority.

It was a high-impact performance, and demonstrated the importance of having the right person on the front lines, interacting with the shopper and really understanding the product. Sure, there is a role for ordering kiosks that virtually eliminate any human interaction. And sometimes, when things are really busy, there doubtless limits on how much interaction there can be.

But the right person in the right place - it can have the effect of turning “a” retailer into “my” retailer.

And that’s Eye-Opening.
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