Cultivating Positive Relationships Customer Service Opinion

Ending the year with a random ‘ballooning’

Decided to take my own customer service advice to end the year. I purchased a bunch of smiley balloons from Dollar Tree for $1 apiece and performed a random “ballooning.”

Figuring that everyone could use a smile right before Christmas (as well as the rest of the year), I handed out balloons in my building and to employees of the community where I reside.

It really is easy and joyous. For everyone. At the end of it, the smiles on the faces of recipients mirrored mine.

One New Year’s Resolution is to do this—and things like it—early and often. We’re looking at another very challenging year ahead, and these simple acts of giving all along the customer service continuum can brighten someone’s day considerably.

While I’d been thinking about doing something like this, the impetus proved to be a big kudon’t. I experienced a negative customer service experience that left me shaking my head about the stupidity, inattention, and uncaring of too many people.

After having a angry meltdown about the situation, I decided to do something positive to envelop and overshadow the negative.

The smiley balloons did the trick. I ended the day feeling “chuffed,” as my friend Fran would say. This simple, inexpensive effort felt so good that I did a “rinse and repeat” the next day. By the way, I’d like to give a kudo to the Dollar Tree at Parker Rd. and I-225. They were willing to blow up a big bunch of balloons ahead of my arrival without me needing to pay or otherwise document that this was a legitimate request. They just trusted that I would show up.

That’s the type of customer service that will keep me coming back in the New Year.

Speaking of New Year, have a very happy celebration. During the New Year, help inspire smiles everywhere you can—including inside yourself.


Customer service presents is every bit as important this holiday season as customer service presence. Customer service needs to be present and accounted for whenever and wherever possible. But, at this particular time of this particularly challenging and anxious year, it’s time for both customers and customer service reps to give presents—in the form of kindness, understanding, and cutting people a break.

Mark Lusky

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