The most unlikely thing happened last week or perhaps it seems unlikely only to me. It was around 5:00 pm when I pulled into Walmart to grab a few items. As I usually do, I grabbed the Walmart short cart to push. It’s the same whether I’m shopping for one item or twenty, I like the short cart. To be honest, I use a cart to push my purse through the store. Some people say my purse is so large it could be used as a weapon. Now you know my backup plan.
When I shop at Walmart, I also people watch. I guess I’m hoping to catch a glimpse of someone like those pictures you see on Facebook of Walmart shoppers looking…well …ridiculous. That day, I could be one of those people, because as I looked down at myself I realized I still had on my house slippers. No..I wasn’t wearing a robe like Peyton Manning on Sunday mornings. Nevertheless…I’m in Walmart in my Ugg slippers..thank God their Uggs, I thought. Like that made it ok.
As I’m moving through the aisles, I spied a tall…correction…very tall young man, looking ripped through his dry fit athletic shirt. Now, I know what you’re thinking…my eyes were drawn to him because of his stature only.
He turned his cart around and was walking towards me…hmmm..he’s wearing one of those Colt’s shirts that fans can’t buy…I wonder?
So trying not to be obvious, I studied his face…yes, he’s definitely a Colts Player.
“Are you a player for the Colts?”
Yep…I said it..out loud.
“I am ma’am”.
Me almost gleeful…
”Really? Which player are you? I’m sorry you all look different without your helmets.”
(Ok, that was a lie…I’d know Peyton in his robe!)
The truth is, as a Colts fan, I’m still stuck in the past, wishing for the players of 2006 when they won the Super Bowl.
“I’m Kelcy Quarles ma’am”
Sadly, I had no clue who he was as he extended his hand to shake mine, but I covered well.
We chatted for a few minutes. He was polite, gracious, quiet spoken and genuine. As I was checking out, he walked past me and said
“Have a blessed evening ma’am.”
On my way home, I couldn’t help but reflect on this chance meeting of a Colt’s player in good ‘ol Walmart.
Ten plus years ago, my son and I ran into Tony Dungy several times at Target. With amazing patience, Tony always chatted calmly, waited for pictures to be snapped and signed autographs.
But with Kelcy, there wasn’t a crowd. No one paid attention to his size, his massive build or his kind eyes. Normally, you don’t think of a NFL player with kind eyes, but Kelcy Quarles eyes were quietly kind.
And he wore his brand well. Polite. Engaging. Warm. Kind and acknowledged this fan as he left the store. He could have passed by at the check out and I would have never noticed. He didn’t though. He made a point to tell me to have a blessed day.
Kelcy Quarles honored the Colts and the NFL brand.
Kelcy Quarles, Branding and Sales…Here’s the Link.
You are your brand too. Whether your employed by a small business, a major corporation or self employed, how well do you represent the company brand? Do your prospects and clients see you as the face of the company that employs you or do they see you as a sales rep pushing products?
This is important. Your brand is very important.
73% of consumers love a brand because of friendly customer service.
Source: Harris Interactive, 2011 Customer Experience Improvement study
What is a brand?
According to Boundless. “The Benefits of a Good Brand.” Boundless Business. Boundless, 14 Oct. 201
Fact: A brand is a personality that identifies a product or service.
To develop yourself as a sales expert in your field, YOU are the personality that identifies the product or service you sell. In essence, you become the brand.
Kelcy Quarles exuded the personality of the Colts brand and the NFL. Sadly we all read about players who couldn’t care less about the brand they represent and their actions prove it.
Be your brand at all times. Wear it proudly. You never know when you’ll run into a prospect or happen to see an important client when your out running errands on a Saturday morning. Don’t be inconsistent with your brand or your company’s brand because…
Customer loyalty can be worth 10 times as much as a single purchase.
Source: White House Office of Consumer Affairs, Washington, D.C.
Every encounter and in every way you are the face of your company. Honor it and own it.