Last Friday I noticed something very disturbing, I noticed that my new Kenneth Cole shoes that I spent $180 on about four months ago were breaking. The leather was separating from the sole and I was very upset for a few reasons...
1) I paid $180 and I expected them to last
2) I wear them all the time and I had a hard time finding comfortable black shoes for my fat feet.
3) I needed to wear them for the wedding in Florida this weekend, and i have no money to buy new shoes
I asked a few people at the store what I should do, and most of the people said i had no chance exchanging these shoes for new ones. The girls at customer service thought I was nuts for even thinking about it. However, I called S and he told me to bring them back and demand that they replace them. So, I decided to go back to KC and see what they could do for me. On Friday afternoon, after work I took the train over to the store with my shoes on and a copy of my bank statement showing that I had purchased these shoes just 3 months before.
I walked into the store and looked for the person who seemed to be the authority figure, they are usually easy to pinpoint, I walked over to her and calmly explained the situation. She looks at my shoes and exclaims, "Oh, no that is not supposed to happen!" She tells me to go pick out a replacement and she will exchange them for me without a problem. I am elated because I was worried that I would need to buy new shoes for the wedding. I had a little bit of trouble finding a replacement that fit because I have short fat feet, but with some help from the wonderful sales person I was able to find a pair to replace my broken shoes. I took my old shoes off, handed them off to the associate, and put on my new shoes and walked out with a $30.00 credit. I have to say i was very happy with the entire experience, and very happy that I spent the money on the shoes, because the service makes it all worthwhile- ah yes and it balances out to $90 a pair.
Now, here is the difference between me and my customers. I can be a huge ass, but I was calm when I walked into the store to return my shoes, I calmly explained my situation and was sweet to the associate. When she agreed to accept these shoes as I return I thanked her and expressed my gratitude. My customers would have walked in, yelled, thrown the shoes, and when I would have been nice enough to grant them something, they would have wanted more. But I was happy with what I received, quite honestly I was expecting less! It is a big difference, but I guess it is a difference you can only appreciate when you work in the business.