Tires and customer service

These days, you’re much more likely to hear a horror story about a business than a positive one. Let’s face it – if a person goes to a place nine times with no issues, but the tenth visit is bad, that’s probably the one you’re going to hear about on social media.

So when a place goes above and beyond in a positive way, I think it’s good to give credit where credit is due.

Today, my mother wanted to go out and buy something, so I told her I would drive her. We were on the way when the road seemed to get really rough. Not the road, though… Yep, flat tire. So I pull over to the far left of a dual turn lane, put on the hazard lights, and get ready to put on the spare.

This is the first time I’ve had a flat since getting this particular vehicle, so I locate everything I need. Lug wrench, check. Jack, check. Spare tire, check. The wheel cover had already rolled off somewhere so that was out of the way, making it easy to get to everything.

I go to loosen the first lug nut, and I realize there’s a problem. Of the four lug nuts, the wrench only fits two of them. Well, time to call roadside assistance. And tweet, of course.

Roadside assistance will take about a half hour, they say, so we wait. The weather was nice today, so mom rolled her window down as we sat in the far left turn lane of a busy highway. I decided to take a pic of her since we were just sitting there anyway.

The mom enjoying the breeze.

A post shared by Josh Carples (@joshcarples) on

While waiting on roadside assistance to show up, two police officers stopped to check on us. Both were very nice, so that was appreciated. And prompted another tweet.

A coworker saw us, recognized me, and stopped to check on us as well. And then a couple of ladies who had been behind us when the tire went out had seen where the wheel cover went and brought that to me.

Seemed like a lot of nice people were out today. A lawn care business was in the other turn lane and asked if someone was on the way. I said yes, and thanked them for asking.

A car pulls up in front of us and stops. A man gets out. It’s been about a half hour, so I’m thinking it’s roadside assistance. He asks if we need help, and I quickly found out he was not roadside assistance. I told him they should be here any minute. He says that he works at a tire place that’s literally just up the street (walking distance, in fact, as we can see the building from where we are on the highway.)

While he’s saying that, roadside assistance calls. There’s a wreck, and they are stuck in traffic. Going to take longer than expected.

So the guy who stopped, David, says he’ll be back in five minutes. He gets a jack and some tools, comes back, gets the spare tire on, and we follow him to the shop.

The assistant manager, Caleb, works up a price for me, and they get started.

Their company – Auto Save Tire & Automotive – went above and beyond on customer service today. One employee stopped to help a stranger in need, and they made a new customer out of it. And the thing is, I was within probably a quarter of a mile of three or four tire/automotive places to choose from, some with much more name recognition.

And it made me think of how far kindness and good customer service can go these days. Among all the competition, sometimes it’s that personal touch that really makes a difference.

So to David, Caleb and the staff at Auto Save Tire & Automotive, thank you for helping me and my mother out today. It was much appreciated.

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