Saturday, June 9, 2012

‘What does good service mean to you?’

“What does good service mean to you?” I decided to write about this question when I considered how readily I tell businesses that their actions have disappointed me. Do I as readily communicate about service that I consider to be exemplary? The purpose of this essay is to do just that.

Lake Transit

For more than a year, I have commuted daily between my home and work. While my bus travel is based in economic necessity and a desire to limit my “footprint,” I also appreciate the care the Lake Transit drivers take getting their passengers where they need to go.

Many drivers know their regular passengers’ names and stops. The drivers communicate by radio to make sure that passengers make transfer points.

Service reached a high point one day when I exited my work to find the bus I needed parked at the stop I board at. The driver said she thought she was running early so she parked at my stop to make sure that I could board. This service was truly exemplary.

The Ashland Food Co-op

The Ashland Food Co-op demonstrated good service when it responded to member concerns regarding single-serving bottled water, as detailed in its September/October 2009 newsletter.

In September 2009, the co-op phased out selling water in plastic bottles smaller than one gallon in size. It sells reusable, stainless-steel bottles co-branded through Klean Kanteen with the co-op logo.

The co-op encourages people to refill their bottles from the tap, noting that while bottled water ranges in price from 89 cents to $8.26 per gallon, most Americans pay about $2 per 1,000 gallons for municipal water service.

The co-op demonstrated an investment in its community by continuing to advertise with the local media although the format of the advertising changed.

The co-op originally printed and inserted sales fliers in the Ashland Daily Tidings newspaper. According to its January/February 2012 newsletter, the co-op decided in January to advertise its sales digitally, with links to the sales flier on the home pages of the Medford Mail Tribune and the Ashland Daily Tidings.

Lake County Publishing

Speaking not only as a consumer of Lake County, Calif. media but also as an employee, I believe our newsroom is made up of dedicated, hard-working employees.

During a breaking situation, we had a reporter live-Tweeting from the scene and newsroom staff listening on scanner -- all working to inform the community as quickly and accurately as we could. I curated our updates from that situation through the use of Storify.

My co-workers’ dedication is not limited to the newsroom, but extends to every department that plays its role in making sure news reaches its consumers both online and in print.

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