published Thursday, May 5th, 2011

Working It: Keeping customers happy is most important part of job

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    Ben Arnold said his job as a sales associate at Learning Express, 313 Manufacturers Blvd. on the North Shore, has taught him to wrap presents. Staff Photo by Holly Leber/Chattanooga Times Free Press

Name: Ben Arnold

Position: Sales associate

Location: Learning Express

First job: Working in the produce section at Greenlife

Best part of the job: “Helping kids who come in here looking for stuff, because the kids are really fun to talk to and work with. One kid came in looking for these new magnet toys (consisting of tiny magnetic balls that can create chains). He didn’t know what they were called or what he was looking for. We showed him five or six different ones and he finally saw what he wanted and bought, like, $70 of them.”

Worst part of the job: People who ask you to wrap gifts and then aren’t happy with the colors you used and ask you to rewrap. That’s definitely my least favorite part of the job.

Biggest challenge of the job: Making people happy who are unsatisfied. We work really hard on customer service, so whenever people come in and are unhappy, we try to do whatever we can to make it up to them. Most people leave happy.”

Tip for keeping a customer happy: Always do what they ask. Give them whatever they want.

What he’s learned: If you’re working somewhere that’s about customer service, that really is the most important part, over aesthetics and things like that. It really is all about the customers. And I can always gift wrap Christmas presents now. That’s the best skill I’ve gotten from this.

How to make a career of it: Smile, be friendly, work hard and do stuff even if no one tells you to do it.

What’s next: Arnold will graduate from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga on Saturday. He hopes to pursue a career teaching Spanish.

about Holly Leber ...

Holly Leber is a reporter and columnist for the Life section. She has worked at the Times Free Press since March 2008. Holly covers “everything but the kitchen sink" when it comes to features: the arts, young adults, classical music, art, fitness, home, gardening and food. She writes the popular and sometimes-controversial column Love and Other Indoor Sports. Holly calls both New York City and Saratoga Springs, NY home. She earned a bachelor of arts ...

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