I was pleasantly surprised today while eating lunch at Tokyo Joe’s. I looked at the end of my table and there were a bunch of cards talking about what the company had done for the community. Initially, “Corporate BS” was running through my mind – I tend to be cynical towards any company that’s larger than a “mom and pop” store. Why? I can never tell if a company’s community efforts are glib or sincere.
Anyways, I was very happy when I saw the final card:
In case you can’t read it, it says: “Thoughts, gripes, comments, kudos, suggestions? Larry Leith – Founder, President. email@example.com – I actually do read all these myself.”
Brilliant! A franchise restaurant giving out the direct email address for the founder of the company. So simple, but such a great move.
Many companies, big and small, are afraid to do stuff like this. They don’t want to get bogged down putting out fires for their customers. So they set up some email address, like firstname.lastname@example.org and sign every email “The Support Team.” It’s ridiculous.
In an age where everything’s depersonalized, make the effort to make your company a little more human. Because people don’t want to interact with companies; they want to interact with other people.
And go eat a meal at Tokyo Joe’s (if you’re in Colorado). I recommend the Mojoe bowl – amazing!
UPDATE: Within an hour of writing this article, I was contacted by both Larry and Linden from Tokyo Joe’s. That’s how it’s done!
DOUBLE UPDATE: Apparently, Larry puts his email address on all the cups, too. I always drink water when I’m there, so I had no idea.