During this pandemic, retail employees have been working harder than ever. While keeping up with the usual demands of their jobs, they may also worry about contracting the virus or even having decreased job stability. Because of this, Verizon has kicked off this holiday season by recognizing their customer service employees with “a call for kindness.”
This campaign is a unique opportunity for customers and the retail industry as a whole to understand that “while a mask covers their face, there is a person behind each one. They are mothers, fathers, daughters, sons, partners, grandparents, brothers, sisters and friends.”
“This year has been unprecedented in so many ways,” says Krista Bourne, SVP of Consumer Sales and Operations at Verizon. “And as we move into the holiday season we wanted to take time to shine a spotlight on our frontline retail workers who’ve been working hard to deliver our customers an exceptional experience.”
For months now, Verizon Wireless has also extended acts of kindness to its customers; In LA alone, Verizon has helped 125,000 low income students become connected to enable distance learning.
At Be Kind & Co., we keep our eyes on the goodness in the world, so it is heartening to see businesses and brands recognize the power of kindness, empathy and understanding.
“I have always believed that when we focus on kindness, it helps shine a light on the goodness of humanity. I am thrilled to see such an influential brand like Verizon invest in and kick off a movement that empowers their employees and customers to understand the importance of being kind to each other through their #ACallForKindness initiative. It’s not only a game changer for the brand, but for the entire retail industry, which at its core is all about people,” said Lu Parker, Emmy Award Winning TV News Anchor, Keynote Speaker, and founder of Be Kind & Co., a multi-platform lifestyle brand and company which helps consumers, brands, and leaders understand, embrace, and practice the power of kindness through inspirational storytelling, and interactive, engaging workshops.
While the wireless business has changed, so has virtually every other retail business. “This is all about respecting and recognizing our frontline employees, (and other frontline retail employees at coffee shops, grocery stores, etc.) who have been serving customers ever since the pandemic began,” Steve Van Dinter, Verizon’s Director of Local Area Communications says.
“Things in stores are certainly different this year with face coverings and plexiglass barriers. This is a way for us to recognize these dedicated individuals as the unique members of the community they are and help bring some of the human connection back.”
As we have all kept our distance for months, it has certainly taken a toll on many of us. Whether it’s connecting through super fast Zoom chats instead of actual meetings or speaking over the phone instead of at a party, there is an element of human interaction and empathy that is missing.
This wireless carrier wants to do the best they can to push back against our bizarre new modes of living, and the Verizon call for kindness is the first step towards making the world a kinder place for customer service employees.
“We want to remind everyone that walks into our stores – and other retailers – that kindness is always welcome,” says Bourne. “Our employees are our family. We expect our customers to treat them like their own family and we’ll do the same in return.”
Though workers can’t see our smiles anymore, we can at least give compliments or well-wishes. Don’t forget to tip your delivery person. Tell your local florist that you like her hat! When leaving a grocery store, make sure to tell your cashier to “have a nice day.” Verizon’s new call for kindness points out that even if we are separated by new obstacles, making the world a better place is still possible.
“A little kindness goes a long way and the more voices that join in, the greater the difference we’ll make,” says Krista Bourne. “I’m hopeful other companies will stand with us as we recognize and respect those on the retail frontlines.