It was time – time to tend to that disorganized top closet shelf once and for all. The neglect was undermining my sense of peace and clarity. I craved order.
Early on, there was a sense of defeat. I ordered some storage bins online that looked promising, but they didn’t end up suiting my needs. That meant I had to go into the brick and mortar store to search for a more fitting solution. The good news for me? This was The Container Store. And, I’d soon find that a trip to The Container Store is a worthwhile experience. In fact, it’s the sort of exceptional brand experience every company should strive for.
After a seamless return process, I journeyed the aisles. I was simultaneously excited and overwhelmed. This place had to have a solution, but where on Earth should I begin? Enter Carlos. He offered to help me – not in that annoying, won’t-leave-you-alone sort of way. Rather, he volunteered to be a partner in solving my organizational challenge.
From the get go, it was clear – Carlos knew his stuff. Given the details of my challenge, he racked his brain for the best options. He didn’t merely point to the first idea that popped into mind and call it a day. Certainly that would have been the easier route for him. Instead, he gave me a menu of options, marching me to different parts of the store to show me exactly what was possible, depending upon my personal preferences and needs.
In the end, I walked out with something different than what I would have expected. But, that something was also a far better solution than what I would have come up with myself. And, Carlos even helped me to tackle a second organization challenge – my kitchen cabinets – all in that same trip.
To The Container Store, that meant a higher dollar sale and a satisfied customer. To me, it meant an extra dose of mental sanity. When I returned home and put all my new storage finds in place, I kid you not, I found myself smiling and feeling a greater sense of calm and order.
You could call this a customer service victory. And, I’d agree extensive employee training pays off. But, to get the full picture, I think you need to zoom back the lens further.” The spirit Carlos carried wasn’t a fluke. Nor, was it a customer service victory alone. Carlos knew how to treat a customer right, but above and beyond that, he was clear on his company’s higher purpose and delivered on it.
In his recent book, Kip Tindell – the Container Store’s CEO and chairman – states why the container store exists: “To improve the quality of life through the joyful calming and time saving gifts that come with being organized.” From my experience with Carlos, I see management has taken the time to make this higher purpose a part of their employees’ DNA. The result is a spirit of passion and commitment in a business where everyone thrives. In focusing on delivering their brand and serving their customer, employees actually boost revenues.
So, in the end this is a tale of what can happen when an organization fulfills its purpose. It’s a reminder that not only is it possible to create a company that’s guided by a clear purpose, but when you do and intentionally communicate it, that purpose can move beyond corporate walls and reach the front lines. And, that purpose can connect with people in meaningful ways, pulling at the cords of our humanity while all the time, driving revenues and business performance.
Fulfillment of clear brand purpose isn’t something all companies can boast. But, for those that do, it pays big dividends. This is the reason why more companies should stop and define their brand platforms and make sure that their culture and teams support its delivery. Would your clients and customers say it’s true of you? If not, what would it take to define and communicate that brand purpose more clearly?