This past weekend our daughter’s van was totaled in a wreck while they were driving to Florida for a vacation. Fortunately, no one was hurt in the accident. Hundreds of miles from home on a holiday weekend they were in trouble. By the time the police arrived to fill out their reports, there was no rental car agency open and no motel options available in the small communities nearby the accident scene.
Their insurance company made arrangements for them to get a rental car, but with the closest office already closed my daughter, her husband and three children were stranded. The tow truck driver driver dropped off their vehicle and offered to drive them to the next airport to the rental car agency. Once there they were told that the company at the airport did not do insurance rentals. They also did not accept debit cards but required a credit card to rent cards. Fearing this in advance, I told my daughter to have the agency call me and I would give them my credit card information, but they refused to do that saying they had to physically swipe the card. There was an rental office open the following day, Sunday, that would accept the insurance rental. The tow truck driver offered to drive them to a motel near that agency. This turned out to be on the other side of the city, but he drove them there and waited until they checked into the motel before returning home to his family.
I’ve do not know his name, but what an act of kindness and extraordinary service he provided. The insurance company appears to have provided limited assistance, and that rental car office was less than helpful to a family in a difficult situation. However, the tow truck driver was a blessing. He was willing to haul my family and everything they had in their van for vacation many miles out of his way to ensure their safety and well-being. They offered him a nice tip which he refused further earning my respect and appreciation.
The following day the rental car office near their hotel was extremely helpful. They accepted the debit car for the deposit and provided them with a great vehicle so they could continue their journey. Again, excellent service.
What a better world we would live in if every business owner and worker provided this type of service to their customers! I do not know if this driver was the owner of the company or just the person on call over the weekend, but I suspect if he wasn’t the owner he knew his actions would have been approved by the owner. Actually caring about going the extra mile to provide excellent service is not found every day in every business. That’s why it’s so extraordinary when it does happen.
This driver did not have to do any of the things he did. My daughter’s family is unlikely to ever live in that community so it’s not like he did anything to earn their repeat business. In fact, I hope they never need the services of this tow truck company again! But what he did was the right thing to do, and when a business does the right thing they will prosper.
If your company makes extraordinary service the standard operating principle it too will prosper because the word will get out. People talk about the bad service they receive, and they tell others when they are treated extraordinarily well by those who serve them. Those who provide bad service may prosper in the short-term, but those will provide excellent service will be the companies who prosper in the long-term.