Saturday, August 9, 2014

Taking that extra step

Being the manager of a self-storage facility may seem like an easy job, and for the most part it is.  There is always something that needs to be done at a facility.  Cleaning units, cleaning the office space, inspecting the facility grounds for trash and debris, the list can go on and on.

When a customer walks in the door, I am ready for them.  There is no clutter on my desk and I’m there to give them my undivided attention.  I know that just before they walked in my desk was full of paperwork, but they don’t have a clue.  I usually am asked the question, “Don’t you get bored?”

I let them know that I do not and we carry on with the business as needed from there.  There is always time to be personable, but never personal.

Each and every customer has his own agenda and timelines that guide them through their day.  When they arrive at Storage Station of Wayne, it is their business they’re here to attend to and I strive at meeting their needs immediately.

Storage Station is located at 2354 Hamburg Turnpike, Wayne, NJ, 07470, you are welcome to stop in during our business hours of Monday through Friday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, Saturday from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm.  Our office is closed on Sunday.  Our telephone number is 862-377-6593, if you’d like to call with any questions, or you can visit our website at

At the drop of a dime, my day of paperwork and/or cleaning can come to a halt because of a customer’s needs.  There is no hesitation or thought, if it needs to get done, it needs to get done now.  Whether it be a light bulb out in front of a unit that needs to be replaced or if a customer comes in the main office to help have their unit lock cut because they lost their key, it is an immediate response the customer requires and deserves.  Here are a few examples.

A tenant came in my office one day and said they were having a problem opening their unit door.  It was an outdoor unit and it was the middle of winter.  I walked out to the unit with the customer and saw it was able to open about a foot from the ground. The customer and I tried to use our combined strength to force the door open to no avail.  Without a thought I dropped down on my back, on to the wet snowy ground and slid under the door to see what I could do.  What happened was, the tenant had a large stack of heavy boxes in the front of his unit and they fell against the door.  I moved the boxes and the door slid open with ease.

I had to go through the rest of my day explaining to those who asked why I had on such a dirty shirt.  “Because at Storage Station of Wayne, we have exemplary customer service!”  was my reply.

I watched a car with a flat tire pull in to the parking lot of Storage Station of Wayne one day.  The young lady who was driving asked if she could use my phone to call her husband.  She attempted but he did not answer.  I had a few options.  I could sit at my desk and do nothing or I could take 15 minutes to help her.  I chose the latter.  She was not a customer or a tenant, but she was a member of our local community and she needed help.  I stepped up and helped her.  I’ve never seen her again or had a customer say they were referred by a woman who we helped fix a flat, but I know my decision was the correct one.

Speaking of referrals, I received a call from a woman, we’ll call her Beatrice, who was referred to us by one of our current tenants regarding her need for a self-storage unit.  After discussing what Beatrice had to store and giving her my advice on what size storage unit she would need, she let me know she would be in the following day to rent.  The next morning was a hot and humid July day.  We had two new tenants move-in one right after the other, each with their own fairly large truck.  They each rented a climate controlled unit, each required the use of our elevator lifts and each took full advantage of all the carts and dolly’s we have for tenant use.

As all of this was going on, a car pulled in the already bustling parking lot.  It was Beatrice.  I watch her get out of her car and she was clearly having an issue walking and was using a cane.  She was a delightful character who, as it turned out, also needed one of our second floor, climate controlled units.  She let me know she had some belongings in her car she needed to put in the unit that day and once she was done, had to drive to her daughter’s home in Long Island, NY.

In my mind, I was thinking that the two lifts were being utilized and the carts were being utilized.   Instead of having anyone of my three new tenants be inconvenienced, I immediately assured Beatrice if she pulled her car in front of the closest stairwell to her unit, I would personally take her items up the stairs and bring them to her unit.  She insisted that she would have no problem waiting, but I knew it would be a lengthy wait so I assured her it would be my pleasure to get her in and out so she can continue her day without delay.  It took only a few trips and a few minutes to get what she needed up to her unit, but my own personal satisfaction of helping her out was immeasurable.  If a tenant was going to refer a customer my way, I wanted their experience to be a good one, not a disappointment.

At Storage Station of Wayne, we try to foresee what the needs of our customers are.  Even if you’re not a current customer, if you pull in our driveway and need help, we do the best we can to be there for our community.

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