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Customer Service With a Twist

Employees at Trader Joe’s deliver a song and dance at checkout
Photograph: Shutterstock

Trader Joe’s has long been known for customer service that is not only excellent but also authentic. A recent viral video of its cashiers winning over a fussy toddler in the checkout line is proof that its employees do whatever it takes to put the customer first.

When a young customer named Julian started crying as he rolled into checkout, Tori Alexander, an employee of Trader Joe’s in Winter Park, Fla., began singing and dancing. See the video post here.

Video courtesy of Alexandra Seba

“Baby Julian was crying, so TJ’s performed ‘We love you Ju,” wrote Alexander in a Facebook post. “I’m extremely thankful for my co-workers. They jumped in and helped me entertain him, which also made the experience even more extraordinary. Customer service is top priority. I love my job."

Like all Trader Joe’s employees, Alexander is encouraged to be herself when it comes to delivering inspired customer service.

In a Trader Joe’s podcast early this year entitled, “Why Is Everyone So Nice?”, the Monrovia, Calif.-based retailer said it’s the No. 1 question they are asked by shoppers.

The answer, according to Trader Joe’s President Bryan Palbaum, is simple. “I think that's one of the first things that we focus on when we're looking to hire people. Start with people that are outwardly nice,” he said in the podcast.

“We can teach anybody how to put a can of corn on the shelf," said Colleen Kelleher, Trader Joe’s director of recruitment and development, during the podcast. "But how to connect with somebody … and do that in a way that's being engaging and inspiring, is different.”

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