Last week Wednesday, I stopped in at Honda of Winston-Salem on my lunch hour, to make an appointment to get tires installed and inspection. There’s only one mechanic (Junior) that I allow to work on my bike and I wanted to know when he would be available. Jim, the service manager, checked the calendar and said, “How about first thing tomorrow?” I said “Okay, but if I can’t work it out with my boss I would call and reschedule.” I went back to work and got the okay to take 4 hours vacation time that Thursday morning. I showed up at the dealer at about 8:30 and waited awhile to get in the door and warm up. The service department opens at 9:00am. I was a little early.
Most of the folks in the service department recognized me and said good morning, etc. When Junior got in, my bike was the first up on his lift. I was sitting in Jim’s office with a cup of coffee and a smoke while Junior was working on my bike. About 10:00, Junior came by the office and said, “We have a SMALL problem.” I hate those words, but I’m glad he found it before it became a BIG problem. When he was about to reinstall the rear wheel, he checked the bearings. This is standard procedure for Junior – attention to detail. He found them to be deteriorated to the point where they had to be replaced or they would cause damage to the rear. He said that he had checked with the parts department and the custom shop and couldn’t find any replacements. He did find some in Illinois but they wouldn’t get to Winston-Salem until Tuesday or Wednesday. Jim said to ship them FedEx overnight so they would arrive Friday morning. But then Jim realized that Junior didn’t work on Fridays. Junior said, “That’s okay, for this bike/customer, I’ll come in.” So that’s the way we left it. The bike would get fixed Friday and I would get a ride to Winston-Salem on Saturday to pick it up. This seemed like a good plan. Little did we know, but Murphy was at work. I had to get to work and there was not an available person to take me, so I called my friend, fellow rider and co-worker, David and asked him to come and get me. He did and I was at work by 11:00 (an hour earlier than expected). Now my challenge was to get a ride home at the end of the day. I live 23 miles from work. I asked a few folks for rides and most of them had other commitments. Finally, I asked my friend and fellow rider John and he said, “No problem, can you leave at 4:00?” John took me all the way to my door. I came to work Friday in my truck and wondered and waited all day for THE CALL saying my bike was fixed and ready to go. It never came. On my way home, I stopped at Winston-Salem Honda to see what was up. Guess what? The part never showed up. Junior came in and waited around for 3 hours for the part and finally went home. I spoke to Jim and he was pretty confident they would have the part Saturday morning and the bike would be ready by noon. Saturday is also Junior’s day off, but he was ready to come in and fix my bike. This time Jim was going to call him when they got the part. Well 12:00 rolled around and I still hadn’t heard anything. I called and Jim said they were going to put a trace on the shipment and they would have to work on the bike Monday. I said that I wouldn’t be able to pick up the bike until the following Saturday. Jim said not to worry about it that when the bike was ready, they would deliver it to my house. And that’s what happened. They delivered my bike Tuesday afternoon, rolled it off the trailer and into my garage. They even washed it.
All in all between Jim and Junior, they made what could have been a really bad deal into a very positive customer service experience.