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"Kathy's Rule"
by Kris Talley. January 15, 2013

We have rules and policies in order to run our business. How to take a sales order, a process to pick, pack, and ship orders. We have rules on warranty issues, pricing, and production timelines when taking “out of stock” orders. They are all essential to run our every day business yet there are very few that are black and white. Most of these we would deem as gray. Here is a great example. One of our rules is we need our sales reps to submit orders via our Logo order form through our customer service email address. However, if one of my reps calls me on a Tuesday afternoon with a rush order, that was written on a napkin, from a lunch meeting, in which the order needs to be there Friday and the rep wont be home till the end of the week, you better believe we are entering that order the day we receive it over the phone to ensure it is there by Friday. It helps our rep, our sales number, and most importantly our customer. See... They are gray rules. 

The surprising fact about the origin of most of our rules and policies might surprise you. Sure we started our business with a plan. Within this plan there are core values, policies for each department, rules of engagement for most departments (really they are for sales because we tend to be a little on the “gunslinger” side) and just a way of doing business philosophy that hasn't changed from the day I started here.  That philosophy is that our business is built on the people that work here listening to the people we sell. In a way, we put a spin on the philosophy that “the customer is always right”. Instead of saying that (because if we are honest this isn't always the truth) we train, remind, encourage, and instill in our Logo crew that “we always do the right thing”. Who cares who is right and wrong. Just do the right thing. It may be the hardest thing (especially when you know you are right) but we are not in business to be right. We are in business to service our customers, grow young strong leaders, make a living, and last but not least spread the great news of the Gospel.  So do the right thing. Do it every time. This is one of the few policies that is black and white. So what about our other rules and policies? 

They come from you. Our customers and reps have helped mold the way we do business. One year our pre-book program was too (how do you say this?)... complicated. Several reps and customers brought this to our attention, the next year we changed it. It was extremely simple. Recently we ran into an issue on how we open new accounts. Truth is we didn't have a good policy or system on how we did this and it wasn't obvious to us until we received a call from a great account. Granted the call originated out of anger thinking Logo was purposely flooding the local market with our products. Quickly what this call highlighted wasn't that we just made a mistake. It put a giant spot light on the fact that our process for opening new accounts was flawed. What did we do? We listened. We apologized and then we quickly changed the process. Now, like all change it will take time to perfect but we are already better than we were prior to the call. The “Kathy Rule” as we call it, made us and will continue to make us a better company. This hits the origin of most of our policies and rules. Sure this one was named the “Kathy Rule”, however we have “Jeff policies”, “(enter many names from retailers here) rules” because you have been the largest impact on the way we run our business. 

So when we listen and develop a product you have been longing to have in your stores don't be surprised. We want to make things you want. When we change a policy due to your suggestion this isn't favoritism. This is us wanting/yearning to be better at what we do, so once again don't be shocked. When you talk, we are listening. So the message here is speak up. Tell us where we can improve. I find myself saying this from time to time, if 12 people tell you, “you are an alcoholic” then you probably are a drunk. Same with our business, if there are enough of our customers saying the same thing, then we have missed something and need to correct it. Just like the “Kathy Rule” if we are lucky enough to hear/see it from our conversation with you, the next policy or rule might contain your name. Talk to you soon. 

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