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Sunday, September 26, 2021

    Business on the Road: Taking a Bite from the Apple (Store)

    John A. Wojtecki
    Doctor John A. Wojtecki has 45 years of experience in Human Resources, Safety, and Training serving the toy, food, plastics, steel, and office furniture industries. John operates his own consulting business and is a Certified Facilitator in Real Colors. He is a volunteer with the Quad Cities Mediation Service. He posts monthly on his LinkedIn account.

    Muscatine Living

    During my trip to Portland, I planned to visit the Apple Store. My hosts advised me to make an appointment. My Saturday call lasted about twenty minutes, with me on hold most of that time. I explained my circumstances with my three iPads. My appointment was for 1:15 pm Monday.

    I arrived early. There was a system outside the store for customers to line up to get served.

    The lay-out of the store included several tables, along with ample charging stations and seating. Each table featured a certain Apple product. The store felt extremely warm, even for me who loves heat. It was loud, with many people investigating new iPads, troubleshooting laptops, and a majority looking for iPhones.

    I entered the line as folks cut in front of me and went up to the host, who directed customers to an appropriate table. I felt a little miffed. After a short wait, the host noticed me and invited me to her station. I gave my name and explained I had a 1:15 appointment. She smiled and asked me to follow her. We walked to the back of the store. Kevin was to be my expert and would join me shortly. Apple kept their word. Kevin introduced himself, and I explained my issues.

    I was Kevin’s only customer. Kevin did say I needed three appointments but would do what he could. He plugged in my two iPads with cracked glass and began working on the third.

    The two iPads with cracked glass had no personal information, and I happily returned them for recycling. Kevin reset the remaining iPad while I watched. He made a call, an individual appeared, took the two cracked iPads, and thanked me for recycling.

    As quickly as the individual left with my first two iPads, Justin appeared. We walked to another table to discuss a new iPad. He began by asking about my iPad use (an excellent customer service practice) and my color and storage preferences. I selected the smallest (I have small fingers) with additional storage.

    Previously, I purchased an aftermarket cover for my older two iPads. Of course, Apple lengthened the new iPad, so the one-year-old cover did not fit. However, I was pleased with the purchase and received a discount for trading in my old iPad. Justin had a credit card reader on his belt and emailed my receipt.

    Justin took me back and introduced me to Blake. I was disappointed with this customer service. Blake was trying to help five customers at once without help. He was to load my new iPad with data from the cloud. Blake would start a process, then go to the next customer. I understood his situation and felt bad. When I knew I could handle the rest, I asked to leave and did.

    Overall, my seventy-five minutes at the Apple Store were productive. Knowing I needed an appointment proved helpful. The customer service folks were knowledgeable and effective. I would take a bite from the Apple (store) again.

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