On Friday, my “cute little red boots” that I ordered from L.L. Bean arrived in the mail.  Regular readers will remember that I ordered these on February 3*, 63 days ago.

At the time, I was quite aggravated that they were backordered for two months and almost decided to forgo them.  But at the urging of a L.L. Bean loving colleague, I placed the order and waited.

I knew that Friday was THE day of delivery because L.L. Bean sent me an email to build the anticipation.  In addition to the boots, the box also contained a signed card telling me that Tiffany and the Bean Boot team “handcrafted these” for me.  It even contained a QR code so I could personally thank my bootmaker!  There was also a note reminding me that “the sale isn’t complete until you are 100% satisfied.  Feel free to return or exchange anything purchased from us at any time if it proves otherwise.  We don’t want you to have anything from L.L. Bean that is not completely satisfactory.”

I won’t be using their return policy.  The boots are as cute in person as they are in the picture.  I wore them all day Sunday, even though it was finally no-boots-required weather.  
While I am not quite the rabid L.L. Bean fan that others are, I will say that on Day 1 the boots were so cozy and comfy that I almost forgot that I was irritated about them two months ago.  

Almost.  I think the lesson is that a great product is the trump card.  A great product can cause people to overlook other transgressions.  But if your great product has very limited supply or takes two months to make, don’t do things (like a feature in the Oprah magazine and Parade) to exacerbate the delay by escalating demand.  If I’m this happy in March, just think of my glee had they come on a reasonable time frame.

— beth triplett

*See blog #612  2/3/14

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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