This week's Wall Street Journal ran a piece called Why The Container-Store Guy Wants To Be Your Therapist. Here's a wee snippet of it for you:
In the last year, the Dallas-based Container Store has taken sales training beyond products, emphasizing how to engage with the customer on an emotional level and how to better listen to the customer's organizational problems through role playing, says Casey Priest, vice president of marketing. The staff needs to be attuned to such issues and develop an "emotional connection" with the customers, she says.
For example, Mr. Lerma, of the Portland store, says one employee will pretend to be a woman asking about belt storage, but might drop clues about how her husband's closet disorganization is driving her crazy. The employee is trained to listen closely and then maybe suggest a closet makeover, with separate his and her spaces to avoid conflict. "When someone comes in to organize belts or shoes, there's usually a bigger problem," he says. Read the whole article ...
The article is a quick read and discusses the growing organizing industry and the recent trend toward addressing the emotional side of a customer who's in the market for organizing supplies. Retail employees are being trained to listen for the telltale language of frustration, anger, and sadness when selling organizing products. One shopper burst into tears when a Container Store staffer walked her packages out to her car. It just goes to show you, like Jessica Duquette says, it's not about your stuff.