Bob...that's the relationship I'm talking about...if more people worked at building those relationships with the people that they work with and for...the work place becomes fun and who knows, life long friendships can be formed...It worked for me.
66GMC...You are in the front lines when it comes to dealing with the public...You and I may have more in common than you might realize...In 1996 I was going to try semi retired life...well that lasted 3 months and I got frustrated, bored and found out I missed dealing with people...I got a job at NAPA as a "Paint Rep"...(This was during the time that NAPA Canada was buying up competition to gain market share, does "Fort Ignition" ring a bell from the mid 90's on the Canadian Prairie's). The problem was that they didn't have paint and I was asked if I could work on the counter as a parts person and help organize their fledgling paint department with respect to what product was required and to set up inventory levels. I spent about 6 months on the parts counter. They had computer systems in place for hard parts but so often I used the books, many times, not for me but, if I could ask the customer does your part look like this or like that, I got them the right part.
Yes, I too would sooner work with an individual that asked what some may consider stupid questions than the guy that doesn't...(I hated having to return parts...it always took 3 times as long to give somebody a refund as it did to sell the damn part in the first place).
You made a comment about "Some of you have an appreciation of the value in establishing a good "working relationship" with your counter people. IMO ... "Respect is a 2-way street." and that customers that display respect and patience generally get better service than the impatient "know-it-alls"." Truer words couldn't have been spoken...The guy that everybody new as a customer that was respectful, patient and an all around good guy did get better service and treatment. On the other side of the coin now...today I want to be that guy.
And if I may...I'd like to confirm the rumor of the leeway that countermen may have when quoting prices...so always remember, the way you treat a counterman may have a direct relationship to the bottom line on your invoice.