Being kind and helpful makes a difference, no matter what business you’re in.

I had to share this story about @publix and I know @petershankman would understand why….

Last week was an extremely hectic week. I live in a state of controlled chaos typically, but this was above and beyond crazed. My son was graduating from high school, so there’s all that goes along with that plus two major parties to throw at my house plus overseeing and chaperoning Project Graduation (the huge after party for 200 seniors that goes til 4 in the morning) plus two big bookings to take care of plus going out of town as a chaperone for the senior cruise–all happening in a span of three days. To summarize, that means work, cooking, cleaning, shopping, laundry, packing, entertaining, and chaperoning all to be done in three days. Needless to say, I was operating on very little sleep and a very tight schedule.

With 30 minutes to run into Publix, I began gathering items on my party list. Doing great on time and efficiency, I headed to check out. No one in line, so I walked right up. The young man at the check out began ringing up my items, while another young man began bagging them. To my surprise and delight another guy shows up beside me to finish unloading my cart. Now, I’ve always liked Publix. They are a nice clean store with great selections and excellent customer service. But, what happened in the minutes to follow sealed my status as a MAJOR FAN of Publix Grocery Stores. 

The young man helping to unload my cart was actually one of the managers. I don’t know if it was the crazed look on my face combined with the contents of my cart that clued this young manager in, but he stepped in and asked if he could help. And, then asked me if I had everything I needed which is not that unusual until he began rattling off individual items that I had forgotten!

“Do you have all your utensils you need?”

“No! Ugh, I need forks.”

“No problem. I’ll get them.” He starts off but is intercepted by another young man who says he’ll get them. The manager comes back.

“Ok. What else? Do you have ice?”

“No! Thank you. I need ice. A big bag.” I hear a voice in the distance, “I’ll get it.”

“Ok,” says the manager. “Anything else? Chips, bread, crackers.”

“Oh, gosh! Bread. I need Hawaiian rolls.” This time the manager takes off. I jokingly make a comment to the cashier that next time I’ll just bring my list and give it to them while I stand here at the register. We all have a laugh as the manager heads back. He looks at the groceries and then turns to me and says “Champagne?”

“Yes! Yes, I need champagne!”

“Ok. Come with me and let’s pick one out.”

I’m hesitant about leaving the check out and all my stuff and causing a back up at the register, but they assure me it will be all right. So, we head off to find some chilled champagne since I clearly do not have time to get any chilld in time for the party. We’re gone a few minutes and to my surprise there is a gentleman in my spot at the checkout. All my groceries are bagged and off to the side. The man sees my confused face and says that he took care of my groceries. Ha! Not! But, it was funny and we all had another laugh and the man headed out with his groceries. Now, get this: the cashier was able to end my bill and start someone else’s while I was gone and didn’t have to hold up a check out line. Brilliant! I pop back into line and he types in a code and my grocery bill appears back on the register so he can finish! Again, I say Brilliant! Bravo Publix!

So, are you following this? Not only did Publix have a team of people who cared about me as a customer, but we’re actually paying attention enough to see what I had going on and might be missing. Amazing! And, then, on top of it, had the equipment to help another customer while they were off helping me at the same time. Customer Service brilliance!

Thank you Publix and, in particular Gulf Breeze Publix, for caring about your customers and not just looking at them as another annoying body shuffling through your store. Because of your company values and the people you hire that represent those high standards, my party went off without a hitch and was a great success and you saved me from going into stress induced cardiac arrest! Ha!

The moral of the story and what does this have to do with you and your business or me and the modeling world? Nothing specific except that no matter where you are or what you do, its always a good idea to be nice to people and take the time to see what’s going on around you. You never know who you may be helping or how that just may affect them.  Whether you believe in Karma, The Golden Rule or Paying it Forward, it doesnt matter. It’s all the same in the end. One innocent act of kindness could lead to huge rewards in return.