Thursday, October 21, 2010

Chicago Travels

I’m writing this as I ride to Chicago with some of my favorite people. We are listening to satellite radio while the driver keeps us on our course to a great friends wedding.

I was really hoping to have some fall foliage on this trip, but so far, the only foliage I see is on the ground. Sad. Also, since I’m in the back seat, the windows are tinted or polarized and the beautiful blue sky looks eerily grey. It’s kind of fun.

The only time I have been to Chicago was when I was a very young child and my cousin was getting married in Ohio or Indiana or some state this way and we passed through (I don’t think we stopped). So this trip is really exciting for me.

Anyway, I don’t have anything to say, but I wanted to check in with you all.

Where should I go while I’m here?

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Returns, Exchanges, & Disappointment

Today I returned two items to two different stores, Menards and Ikea. I thought it was interesting what happened at each, so I’ll write about it here.

I went to Menards, walked in with my receipt and the curtain rod. There was no wait, so I went up to the counter, made my exchange. They scanned my receipt, scanned the item, handed me the receipts and, had I left at this point instead of browsing, I would have been in and out in 3 minutes. Good service!

When I went to Ikea, there was a line. I took my number 56, looked up and saw that they were on 53. I sat on one of their couches, grabbed a catalog and leafed through it. By the time they called my number, it was probably 10 minutes from when I first sat down. They couldn’t apply my credit to the card, because B used her card and I didn’t have it. They had to give me in-store credit. Yuck. Bad service indeed!

Even still, I hate Menards and love Ikea. Here’s why:

Menards’ slogan is “Dedicated to Service and Quality.” Except for this one time, I have yet to see either. When I was browsing through the store, and every other time I’ve been there, I could not find anything, nor could I find help. When I did find what I was looking for, it was the wrong size and the person that helped me find it dashed off before I could get more help. I left without buying anything else.

When I sat at Ikea, I saw that they have spare parts up for grabs on their wall. This means that if you lose a screw or break a plastic doohickey, you can just walk in and get the thing you need. There is no cost. There is no need to ask for help. It’s just there. Also, I mentioned that I was missing this iron-on hem for some curtains I was keeping and the return clerk went in the back and found me some.

I hate Menards because this is the first time I’ve returned anything and the first time I’ve had good service there.

I love Ikea because even when I have bad service there, I get good service in the end.

Menards, please change your slogan, because I never get service or quality at your store.

Ikea, please keep up the good work.

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