News from the Pool Store

Sunday, September 25th, 2005

by Dennis DiPaolo

The mountain laurel came back this year.  Two years of drought a few years ago killed off most of the plants that used to bloom so beautifully along the Souhegan River and in the woods.  I guess the coldest, wettest May in 200 years really strengthened them as they were just beautiful this year.

That’s the upside of this summer’s weather.  The down side was that we were all bored in May as you all avoided us.  Then, in the first two weeks of June, you all showed up all at once!  Compared to all of my friends who own pool and patio stores, we survived pretty well.  They had to take the phones off the hook for days at a time, close their water labs for both weekends, and they ran out of many products.  We kept up with all of you (and actually increased sales by more than the other stores) and only experienced about four hours of extraordinarily long lines when a water lab computer and a cash register died simultaneously from exhaustion on June 5th.  When we analyzed our performance after that day, we developed a new internal store procedure:  when the line at the cash registers gets back to the gazebo, the cashiers will stop answering the phone live. If no one else can get it, we’ll let the incoming calls go into the voice mail system.  That leaves us able to get those of you who are in the store, out faster.  In-coming callers will still be able to get store hours, directions, a transfer to a department within the store where we might be able to take their call, or they can leave a message for us to call back when things slow down.  Those of you who are upset with us when we take a call instead of waiting on you more quickly should see that happen less often.

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