Tell Me A Story

Martin Dingman Matt BeltA tale of two attitudes: 

9:30am, 30 minutes before the store opens, about 3 weeks ago. I’m at a desk in the front of the store doing work, but forgot to re-lock one of the doors. A customer barged in, not checking the store hours, which was not his fault since the door was unlocked. Walked straight to the belt rack without acknowledging my existence, even though I greeted him. Found his waist size on the rack, looked at some prices which were $65-$95, and started to walk briskly for the exit. I asked if he needed help with a belt to which he said, "Not for $65", and stormed out.

2pm today. Customer looks over belts at the belt rack, and turns to head out. I asked if he needed any help, and he said, "Well, I had to come to the City to drop my wife off at an appointment and I forgot to wear a belt. I have a bunch of belts at home, but I can’t stand my jeans falling." I found the Martin Dingman Matt Belt in his size, which sells for $65 and is great for jeans. I asked, "Would you give me $45 for this?" His eyes lit up, and he bought the belt. I would bet $45 is slightly more than he wanted to pay, but he recognized I was trying to help him out, and it was a good deal, and we turned a belt, so everyone won.

What the customer today didn’t know is that immediately after the first interaction, I began thinking: what should I have said to him? Should we keep a ball of twine in the store for customers that don’t want a reasonably priced, all-leather, made-in-the-USA belt? Maybe duct tape? In my head, I settled on, "I’d have sold it to you for less if you treated me like a human being." And the reality is, I would have. I’m sure he probably thought I was an underpaid, under-educated retail cashier, but that is only half-true. If he’d have told me a story, he’d have walked out a happy customer. 

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Wingtip Founder & CEO, Ami Arad is the quintessential modern gentleman. He has distinctive taste, an eclectic style, and dresses for every occasion. Ami developed his vision for Wingtip at a young age; even back in high school where four years of speech and debate meant weekends wearing a coat and tie, he was in his element. Years of working in upscale men’s clothing stores and socializing in cigar shops, coupled with his entrepreneurial spirit, inspired Ami to develop Wingtip, a men’s specialty store and private social club.