Monday, December 29, 2008

Old Navy and Starbucks made my day

I managed to leave Old Navy today with a giant shopping bag full of clothes (all gifts, BTW) for only $8. Not only was everything on sale or 60% off, I had $30 in ON Bucks Back. I left the store and headed south on State to The Children's Place, where I was going to pick up some cute warm clothes for my niece and still-in-utero nephew to wear when winter comes to Australia. Only I realized at the cash wrap that my wallet was missing. Fortunately my Old Navy cashier had saved it for me and management told me they had it as soon as I called. Nothing was missing and the manager even checked my face against my ID, which I appreciated. Yay Old Navy. Now I have one more reason to love you.

Can you bear another rave for a national chain? Since one of my favorite coworkers gave me a Starbucks card for the holidays, I headed downstairs for a latte treat. My barista gave me a complimentary double shot and told me about how Starbucks has an internal website where employees can pick up shifts in any city in the country. She lives in Oklahoma where apparently all the Starbucks are drive-throughs ("It's like working in a fast food restaurant"), but she was financing her visit home to family by working part-time while on vacation. Interesting, huh?

I heard on NPR earlier this season about how the economic downturn is improving customer service by bringing highly qualified people front-line service jobs, and I'm beginning to think there's some truth to that.