When I have an interaction with someone who's friendly, helpful and provides great customer service, I want to shout it from the rooftops.
So today, I'm going to tell you about a conversation I had with the City of Champaign's arborist, Bill VanderWeit, who helped me with a problem tree in my parkway.
The two huge limbs extending over the roof of my house have been a concern for me since before I owned it. In fact, when I took my parents to look at the house with me, the first words out of my dad's mouth were, "Those branches are going to be a problem."
With every rainy night or windstorm, like the one we had late last week, I've worried about those limbs splitting from the tree and landing on my roof and porch. Not to mention, it's an ash tree, and reports of the Emerald Ash Borer make me feel a little panicked about what would happen if the tree became diseased.
I got a flier in the mail last Friday, notifying me that the city will be pruning in the area. I contacted the forestry division to find out if they could prune the branches looming over my home, and finally got the chance to talk with VanderWeit this morning about my concerns.
He was receptive and understanding, and - get this - he drove to my house to look at the tree and called me with his thoughts. I mean, he went to my house. What incredible customer service.
Unfortunately, he said pruning off the offending limbs would wound the tree too gravely and the tree isn't structurally sound. I asked the city to cut it down. It makes me sad, but it's just not worth the chance of a limb crashing into my house. VanderWeit said there's enough shade in my neighborhood that I shouldn't notice too much of a difference when the city takes down the tree in the next month or so.
But sadness about the tree aside, I'm still reveling in the positive experience I had talking to VanderWeit. Too often, situations like these become frustrating headaches, and I'm grateful he made things so easy.
I have to ask: Who else around here gives awesome customer service? What's been your best experience with a local business or organization?
Photo of an ash tree from www.karenswhimsy.com