Today I had one of the most wonderful experiences of my life. If you hang around me long enough you will see that I am cursed. Actually, I have turned my curse into a never ceasing source of entertainment. The curse is that I am constantly plagued by idiotic (I will try to avoid the word “stupid”) salesmen. I now entertain myself by seeing how bewildered, and bewildering, they can be.
My trip to Road Runner in Anaheim did not give me that sort of entertainment. Rather, I had one of the most enjoyable service experiences of my life.
I went to Road Runner to get a gait analysis and see which shoes their fitter recommended for me. My Fit Expert was Mary (real name withheld since she has such an unusual name, it would be easy to pick her out).
Before I go into my shopping experience, let me say that the store was not all that big. Much smaller than I pictured. On the other hand, how much room do you need to hold a bunch of shorts, shirts and shoes? I really expected more of their on line presence to be at the store. There are many more products available on the web site.
Mary, and another girl (whose name I failed to get), greeted me warmly and allowed me to look around without getting in my way. Unfortunately, the looking around only took about 2 minutes.
I asked Mary if she could do a gait analysis for me. She carefully explained what all the machines were looking at. I have lots of questions. She probably was glad to have someone ask the questions. Otherwise she has all this knowledge that she does not get to share with others. It is not like a group of girls get together on Friday night and talk about pronation, motion control and the collapsing of the metatarsals from heel strike to toe off.
She showed me shoes that were my size and fit (stability plus). She explained all the details as to why she chose that style of shoe for me. She then told me a bit about each of the shoes in the category. She showed me 2 different models. One in my preferred brand, New Balance, and another one from Saucony. The NB 1222 was a good fit and felt very much like my NB 857s that I just bought. The Saucony shoes were the Hurricane 9. They felt a bit lighter, but still very sturdy.
I ended up with the Sauconys. That will give me a different manufacturer that I can test out and it will give my feet a break from potentially running in the same shoe all the time.
I bought a few other things in the store and had a bizillion questions about various items.
When I was done, I told Mary that I was looking for a particular store near her location. She did not know where it was, but took the time to look it up on the Internet for me. I have never had anyone go out of their way like Mary and the other girl who helped me today at RR Sports.
I wrote a letter to their manager. It is quoted below. I will let you know what the manager has to say about his workers.
Manager, Road Runner Anaheim,
I want to tell you what a wonderful experience I had in your store today.
I live in Mexico and have not yet found a store that sells running shoes in my size there. I was thrilled when I found out last week that I was taking a trip to California and that you had retail locations. I recently (April) bought a pair of shoes through the Road Runner website, but wanted to get a gait analysis today and possibly a second pair of shoes so that I would be set for a while.
The two ladies who helped me with my shoe purchase were phenomenal. While “Mary” was helping me pick out shoes, she was very interested in answering my questions. And I had a lot. When she had questions of her own, or did not know the answers to my questions, she was willing to get help from your other staff members. That gave me even more confidence that I was getting the best help that was available.
I did not get the name of the other lady who helped me, but she was equally interested in helping me have a good experience in your store. It thrilled me more than she will know that when I asked for a product that you did not carry, she wrote that down and said she would try to see if you could stock that in the store. As a customer, I felt as though my comments were being taken seriously. Thank you.
Your staff is doing a great job. My two other encounters with RR Sports were equally satisfying. Both of those were with the Internet division. The people there were able to help me pick the closest store to my location so that I could make best use of my limited time while here in your area.
Thank you to you and your staff.