Psychology of Consumer Behaviour |

Monday, October 13, 2008

My Love Affair with the TTC and a Man with a Mop

Something pretty magical happened yesterday. I was on my way to meet a friend to see a movie. The streetcar ride and the short subway ride were quick and uneventful, but as I entered the train at the Scarborough RT, I noticed a complete cup of coffee had been spilled and was running down the entire length of the car. Gingerly, we all tried to walk around the puddles. Carefully I sat on the side that seemed to be mostly coffee free. As we awaited the driver to walk from one end of the train to the other, a gentleman appeared with mop in hand and began mopping up the coffee.

“Wow,” I said, “Thank You! The TTC sure is efficient.”
Looking amazed, he smiled and said,” Thank you. We try!”

It was as if no one had ever complimented him. I wondered about that on a day so near to Thanksgiving. Everybody complains when any little thing goes wrong on public transit, but who thanks the everyday people for the everyday things they do?

In my classes I talk about consumer behaviour and marketers and companies and communication. As consumers how responsible are we for the service we get?
If we said thanks more often, would we get better service? Maybe.

All I know is that I have a little bit of a love affair going with the TTC. It’s a bit more reliable than at least a few of the men I’ve known. It picks me up and takes me places in rain, and sun, and snow. I can daydream, listen to my music, tune into strange conversations, watch a scene or two that would rival the best sitcom, and arrive at my destination relaxed. OK, sometimes there’s a really smelly person or someone clipping their toenails or someone eating a three course meal. But they are all the customers!

How much does a word of thanks cost? What does it say and what does it mean?
As for me, I love a good man with a mop!

No comments: