Examples of Outstanding Customer Service: Downtown Seattle Nordstrom Women’s Shoes

As you’ll probably learn from this blog, I love Nordstrom.  No, not just love, adore.  They are a wonderful clothing retailer and have by far the best customer service I have ever encountered, anywhere.  Don’t believe me?  I present exhibit A: Jaeha (pronounced “Jay-ha”) of women’s shoes. Side note: Jaeha, if you’re out there and reading this, please know that I still love you and, even though I wish you were still at Nordstrom, I know you’re doing amazing wherever you’re currently at.

I met Jaeha during the Nordstrom’s annual Anniversary Sale in 2010.  In case you don’t know, the Anniversary Sale is Nordstrom’s biggest sale event where they discount new fall items.  Nordstrom cardholders get early access to the sale so Blake and I had gone to browse the sale  and pre-order our items.  It was 6:00pm on a Wednesday and we met Jaeha in the women’s shoes department.  He helped me find a great pair of boots and then, generously, took us down to the men’s departments for my boyfriend.  Now yes, I know Nordstrom staff are paid on commission so obviously a larger order meant more money for him, but I’ve worked with other staff who just worked their department so this to me was going above and beyond.  This was in 2010 and we had a wonderful experience with him.  All our items came in perfectly (right size, color, etc.) and from then on, we always made a point to say “hi” to Jaeha whenever we shopped.

2011 came around and so did the Anniversary Sale.  I received the sale magazine in the mail and also did my reconnaissance online.  However, we were attending a wedding in Southern California and I realized too late that we wouldn’t be in town during the “early access” days and Nordstrom, at this time, didn’t do early access online.  So what to do?  I emailed Jaeha asking him what my options were (go to a California store and have our purchase shipped to us, etc.) and about an hour later he emailed back saying send him my order and he would find everything and put it aside for us.  Umm, what?!

I’ve never had a retail experience like what happened with Jaeha.  I emailed him my order (and between me and Blake, it was a large order), gave him my credit card information over the phone, and scheduled a day to pick everything up.  When we got back, Blake and I went to the downtown store with a few nagging worries.  It wasn’t that we didn’t believe in Jaeha but we assumed, since having done everything over email and phone, something was bound to get lost over all those wires.  Boy, were we wrong.  Jaeha was all smiles as he handed over our bags and confirmed the credit card information.  Not only was everything in our order there, it was all the right color and size.  And the cherry on the sundae?  Jaeha discretely gave us a Nordstrom giftcard he had bought for us with a wonderful hand-written note saying how much he loved working with us (at that point in time, Jaeha was getting ready to leave for another job).  I was speechless.

My experience with Jaeha was without a doubt the best customer experience I’ve ever had.  Jaeha built a relationship with us over the year that extended beyond “let me grab your size”.  He knew us by name and he was always happy to spend as much time as we needed.  If I could, I would hire Jaeha in a heart beat to run a customer service team and teach people what unforgettable customer service really is.  Until that day, I hope the company (I won’t name names here) who snatched him up from Nordstrom knows how lucky they are.