Monday, July 18, 2005

A Carol for a Jonathan

A Carol Award!
By Gil C. Schmidt

Although I could complain about the shoddy construction of my printer, I, in my impressive maturity, (at least I’m impressed by it!) will focus on the positive side of having my Z65 fall apart like a house of cards: I found a Carol Award winner.

His name is Jonathan Iñesta and he works as a Desktop Publishing Consultant at CopyMax, right here (there, over there…well, anyway, someplace away from my home office) in Mayagüez. Over the past week, I swooped down on Jonathan with a series of somewhat urgent printing requests and he handled them all with ease and even style.

Because I’m a professional writer, I make sure (I try hard) to edit and format my copy as cleanly and as completely as possible, so that when I hit “Print,” I have no worries. Unlike other customers Jonathan deals with (almost always the one in front of me,) I don’t ask for 17 format changes “just to see what it looks like.” I go in, hand over my USB drive, crack a joke or two (I’m a really funny guy) and—voilá! I’m handed freshly-printed sheets and after the customary 11-minute wait to pay (Service alert! Service alert!), I am on my almost-merry way.

But one project defined the difference between Jonathan and non-Carol Award winners. I needed promo cards for an event and I was under a very tight deadline. I’d created the cards, 8 to a page, and needed not only printing, but cutting as well. For once I was unable to get to CopyMax with plenty of time to spare; I had but 50 minutes and Jonathan was very busy.

Because he knew I was an easy customer to deal with (I AM a funny guy), Jonathan asked me what I needed, and when I explained, he told me he would handle it immediately. Within a couple of minutes, he had the printer going and was searching for someone to make the required cuts.

Only no one was available. It was lunch hour and in the OfficeMax world, you either take your lunch hour at the scheduled time or you lose it. Doesn’t matter who needs service or how many are waiting: OfficeMax would rather leave them hanging than deal with an employee’s personal choice to do his or her job to the best of their ability.

Jonathan did exactly that. He stayed on, losing his lunch hour, to take care of my cards and several other customers as well. In under 45 minutes I had a box of 1,200 promo cards and the secret glee that comes with knowing I could hand out another Carol Award.

So, to Jonathan Iñesta, a Carol Award for Excellent Service. (And one to me for being a funny guy.) I’m pretty sure that wherever Jonathan ends up, he will be a success, combining as he does technical skill with people skills in a very powerful way.

And he thinks I’m funny. My fan club grows every day.


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