Hug Your Customers: STILL The Proven Way to Personalize Sales and Achieve Astounding Results Hardcover – Jun 11 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
If you work at a Fortune 500 company and live in southern Connecticut or New York's Westchester County (two of Manhattan's most affluent suburbs), chances are you buy your suits at Mitchells (in Westport, Conn.) or Richards (in Greenwich, Conn.). These two independent clothing stores are some of the most successful in the business and outfit CEOs from Chase, GE, IBM, Merrill Lynch and Pepsi. Mitchell, whose father started the business, shares the secret of his success in this unoriginal but cheerful guide to keeping customers happy. Hugging your customers, he says, has nothing to do with being touchy-feely around them and everything to do with offering them over-the-top service. For Mitchell, that means literally offering a customer the coat off your back, if that's the only one left in the store in the customer's size and preferred style and color. It means going to customers' homes to tie their bow ties for big events. It means serving coffee and bagels in the store and giving away hot dogs in the parking lot on summer Saturdays. Some might view this as fawning, but for Mitchell, it's the best way to keep customers coming back. His advice-know your customer, think outside the box, have a "no problem" attitude-is hardly groundbreaking. But those who work with customers daily have much to gain from this chipper, inspiring handbook.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
About the Author
Jack Mitchell is the Chairman of Mitchells Family of Stores (Mitchells, Richards, Marshs, and two Wilkes Bashford stores), five of the most successful clothing stores in the business. He and his wife, Linda, live in Wilton, Connecticut, where they raised four sons.
Inside This Book(Learn More)
Top Customer Reviews
Jack Mitchell is co-owner and CEO of Mitchells/Richards, the upper-end clothing retailer. Today, Mitchells/Richards sells $65 million in apparel annually. Mitchells/Richards dresses many Fortune 500 executives. However, the store began as a modest family business, started by Jack's dad in 1958.
Mitchell writes: "When the store opened, there were a few dozen shirts, some socks, a couple of sweaters, and a few ties. Plus, exactly three Doncaster suits, the brand Dad created for the store, priced at $65 apiece. A size 40 banker's stripe. A 42 navy blue. And a 42 charcoal gray.... Nowadays we stock over three thousand suits-for men and women."
Mitchell credits his family store's success to making the store a home, where customers feel welcome. Mitchell says his parents: "...understood that customers wanted five things more than they wanted a great location or enormous inventory:
1. A friendly greeting
2. Personal interest
3. A business that makes them feel special
4. A 'no problem' attitude
5. Forward thinking"
Mitchell says that to be successful in the service industry, you must build a customer centric organization-one that hugs the customer. It's not enough to have satisfied customers. You need extremely satisfied customers.
Mitchell writes: "When you have strong relationships, customers will do more of their buying from you. They'll refer other customers. They'll communicate with you better and tell you what they like and what they don't like, in turn making your business more efficient and effective.Read more ›
As a customer of the Westport store, the merchandise is some of the highest quality, exquisite clothing and accessories one can find...with price tags to match. Today I went to the store to pick up an expensive evening gown I bought for a cruise. I am leaving in two days and am on a hectic schedule to say the least. I waited 15 minutes while the cashier tried to track down the alteration, as it was marked "Not finished" though today was the promise date. The alterations took 2 weeks, and I patiently waited for today to arrive...I tried on the dress, and found a repair had not been made and a stain that hadn't been on the dress when I bought it was now there. The dress had to be sent to a dry cleaner (Mitchells is footing the bill), and I have to go back to the store (20 miles) tomorrow to pick it up (they did offer to deliver, but later in the afternoon tomorrow - too late). (The salesperson never checked the alterations after the sale - a critical error. salespeple should receive a list of all open alterations, and inspect each the day before promise date is reached.) While all this was going on, I did not feel at all hugged. Jack Mitchell saw me standing by the counter looking a bit dismayed, and admittedly did offer a cappucino, didn't ask me if there was a problem, ...is this what a $1400. purchase should look like?Read more ›
Most recent customer reviews
A business owner who'll do anything for his customers--even fly across the world to deliver a suit! He turns clothing shopping from commodity to magical experience--and he is very... Read morePublished on June 10 2004 by Shel Horowitz
I've always been irked by rude customer transactions and the apathetic, useless people that facilitate in the transaction. Read morePublished on Jan. 15 2004 by clothing design entrepreneur
I have read over 50 books on Customer Service. This is by far the best of all of them. It goes into great detail on what things you need to do, not just the fact that you need to... Read morePublished on Jan. 8 2004
great book on the best way to take care of your customers. has a great message that any business should try to follow.Published on Dec 10 2003
Highly recommend to any businessperson as a "how-to" guide to differentiating yourself through service and overall attention to the customer. Read morePublished on Dec 7 2003
Thank you Jack Mitchell for sharing your knowledge, insight and wisdom in such a concise, easy to read guidebook. Read morePublished on Oct. 8 2003
I read many books and published two. This books is written by a very caring person who has a very humanistic attitude about life and the store customers. Read morePublished on Aug. 21 2003 by gabriella
Hug Your Customers is the best tool you can offer your team in any business. There is not enough "hugging" in the world today. Read morePublished on July 30 2003 by Alison F Leigh
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