Tag Archives: Business

Does Service Still Matter?

CashierI am a business owner and long-time Dominick’s shopper. Having spent a lot of money with your company over the years, I am very disappointed to share my latest interaction with your brand. On March 26, 2013 my wife and I were in Northbrook for a mini-vacation. We stopped into Dominick’s Store #1719 located at 1340 Patriot Rd, Glenview, IL 60025 where Mr. Mike Trimarco is the manager. I am pleased to inform you that the store was incredibly clean and organized and that my experience in the store was quite pleasant until I arrived at the checkout line.

We waited briefly in the express line with only ten items. Our cashier’s name was Vita. After being amiable with the preceding customer, Vita asked if we were reward members prior to saying hello. My wife and I were excited about our vacation and therefore ignored the lack of friendly service that we have come to expect at Dominicks. My wife hands our rewards card to Vita, who scans it and then places it on the counter without saying anything or acknowledging how inappropriate this gesture was. While scanning our items, she began a conversation with the male bagger whose name I do not remember. Already offended by this rude behavior, we waited patiently for our total. Vita announced our total and then proceeded with her conversation with the bagger. I must pause to inform you that our items were properly placed in bags and doubled where necessary. However, when our checkout was complete, our bags were in front of the bagger, who was leaning on the register enjoying a conversation with Vita as if we were not standing there. I had to reach in front of him to grab my bags once it became clear that he was not going to hand them to us or move to make it easier for us to grab them ourselves.

One school of thought is that this issue was isolated and was the result of two people that chose not to uphold Dominick’s commitment to family, food, value and fun. Maybe they do not understand or agree with their focus on giving “primary attention to the needs of shoppers partnered with the highest standards for all of its merchandise.” Another school of thought is that the poor service we received was racially motivated and the result only of the color of our skin. Either way, this behavior is unacceptable. This formal complaint solicits an apology and disciplinary actions. I am sure that the Dominick’s brand does not accept or agree with this customer treatment and I am hopeful that a resolution can be reached. I am a blogger, doctoral student and business owner.  I do not believe that I deserve great service as a result of those facts. I believe that I deserve great service as a result of the fact that I am spending my hard earned dollars with your brand. I further believe that we all deserve this same quality of service and life here in America based on the fact that we are American and not based on what color we are. On one side of the argument is the hesitation make this matter a race issue. People would accuse me and others like me of “playing the race card”. What I think is important is that we as a society come to terms with the fact that racial issues persist.  When we accept this fact then we can have a REAL conversation about it. Until then we are living in the matrix and not dealing with the heart of the problem.

I sent a letter to the company explaining my experience and I look forward to hearing from them and resolving this matter amicably and expeditiously. I would like to ask you if you would be offended in this situation and if you agree with the decision to address the matter with the Dominick’s brand. What do you think?

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Filed under Politics, Uncategorized

Diary of an Entrepreneur

entrepreneurI found this photo online by accident one day last year (Source: Secret Entourage).  I don’t remember what I was searching for initially but once I read the caption I immediately knew that this would be my motto for the next year or so.  When I was in high school I dreamed of working for myself and starting multiple companies. While in college I studied business and learned what that would take. Post-college I did what most people do, I got a job.  I mean it does take money to make money, right? I’ve been chasing my dream for well over ten years now and there is one thing that is absolutely true. Entrepreneurship is HARD!  Let’s just be honest here, unless you have the support and resources to fully capitalize your business at conception, there is an enormous amount of work that goes into it.  Because I knew that I was grossly unprepared to do most of the things that I really wanted to do in business, I focused on my education.  I began working in secondary education but the passion for entertainment never left.  I sang in my every music ministry my church had to offer but I was still missing valuable portions of my need to express.  Knowing this, I enrolled in an Entertainment Business degree instead of a music education degree for my masters program. During this time I reshaped my entrepreneurial goals and developed a solid business plan for the Bailey Boy A.D.E. Foundation. Although I have several business ideas filed neatly in folders on my MacBook Pro, I chose to focus on the business that would help other people more than myself. Some days I think that this was a foolish decision but when I see the joy on the faces of students in one of my programs it is hard to think about doing anything else.  I have lived in three cities over the last two years chasing opportunities to do the things that I love and finish my education.  Did I forget to mention that while working in education for so long and laying the foundation for the Bailey Boy Academy, I decided that I would pursue a doctorate degree in education? My wife and I have made sacrifices that even I question at times.  I have had many sleepless nights and felt like the work would never end.  My passion for writing and even establishing this blog came from the fact that I’ve been in school for so long that writing is all I know how to do.  Sometimes I think about all of this and say, “What are you doing?” “Why are you doing this?”  In those really tough times I run across this picture and remember that in these years of difficult decisions and sleepless nights I am not alone.  There are others that have decided to live there lives in such a way that most people would call foolish.  Most people would simple decide that it was not worth all of this.  I remind myself that if you really want something then you have to work hard for it.  I may not know exactly when the payoff will come but I am certain that it will.  If you are thinking about being an Entrepreneur, know that you will be committing years of your life to a lifestyle that others may not understand or agree with.  But if you are willing to live those years like most people won’t then you will be well able to live the remainder of your life like most people can’t.  GOOD LUCK!

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Filed under A Better You, Education