What a difference when we enter the Black’s photography store. We’re greeted at the door of the clean, bright and well-stocked outlet by a smartly dressed woman in her 30s who takes the time to qualify us by asking questions to determine our wants. When I tell her that we’re there to pick up digital prints, she walks us back to the cashier’s desk and punches my information into the computer. But she does more than just ring up a sale.
The salesperson calls me by name, which is a nice touch. (She’s tipped off by my record on her screen from my previous visits to Black’s.) She easily produces the stack of photos, then pauses and makes eye contact as she presents an alternative to simply paying the bill up front. She offers to sell me prepaid cards for digital photo processing, an option that would cut the bill considerably, and perfectly describes how. And she explains the distinction patiently, never applying pressure, always making it clear that the choice is mine to make. I’m won over by her respectful and knowledgeable approach — and by what’s obviously a great deal. I buy the cards, and the salesperson caps off a splendid performance by offering a fistful of coupons for photo upgrades on a later visit.