This is How to Pay it Forward in Difficult Times

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1.     Feature Article

This is How to Pay it Forward in Difficult Times
By Jess Pischel, Customer Experience Consultant

As the country struggles with the pandemic, more and more companies are stepping up to help healthcare and frontline workers, sick patients, and others in the community. With so much negative news lately, it is about time we spread some positivity!

Generosity wins. How you treat your customers and community will result in how they treat you in the future. Our clients have gone above & beyond to help their communities through this challenging time, and I am so excited to have the opportunity to brag about what they have done.

CBC Federal Credit Union

Picture1, The DiJulius GroupCBC Federal Credit Union has 6 branch locations throughout Ventura County, in Southern California. In an effort to support their community and local food vendors, CBC has pledged $50,000 towards their EPIC Difference campaign, which is helping their members (customers) who are in need. They teamed up with local restaurants and purchased $50 gift cards to give some financial relief to their members affected by COVID-19.

So far, they have sent over 400 gift cards to their members! Their goal is to reach 1000. Their members can be nominated through various channels such as online banking and their internal intranet. Additionally, any member who has recently contacted their collections department is nominated automatically due to hardship.

Image002, The DiJulius GroupThey are not only helping their members; they are also helping local restaurants. The unexpected outcome has been that many of the local restaurants have brought their business to CBC Federal Credit Union as a result of the initiative. New accounts are being opened at record levels because of all the positive press they have received.

“Our leadership team felt that it was not only critical to keep our operations moving, but we felt we needed to do more for both our community and our members since so many businesses could not,” said Rick Weber, President & CEO of CBC Federal Credit Union. “CBC Federal Credit Union never worked harder and with more dedication than the months of March and April, when many other financial institutions were shuttering lobbies, branches and services creating many inconveniences and unintentionally bringing more anxiety. I am proud to serve with our CBC Team and feel that they are heroes in what they have done to make our community better during this difficult time.”

The Mendoza Company, McDonald’s

The Mendoza Company owns 16 McDonald’s franchise locations in Ohio.

Picture3, The DiJulius GroupIn appreciation for the healthcare workers, police officers, firefighters, and paramedics who are committed to health and safety, McDonald’s offered free “Thank You Meals” between April 22-May 5, as a token of appreciation for their selfless service. They then extended the offer through May 6th for National Nurse’s Day.

The Mendoza Company donated 10,000 meals throughout their 16 restaurants during those 15 days. They offered a meal for breakfast and lunch/dinner to each first responder. Those meals included a sandwich, hash brown/fry and a beverage served in a Happy Meal Box with an appreciation letter. “It was an honor serving front line essential workers during this time. We also made sure to reward our own essential workers for their efforts during this crisis. We are blessed in so many ways,” said Brandon Mendoza, Area Supervisor, The Mendoza Co.

LUSH Cosmetics

As a soap company, LUSH Cosmetics considered themselves to be in a unique position to help fight the spread of COVID-19 by providing product donations to communities with limited access to personal hygiene products.

LUSH has over 250 stores across North America, therefore they have many neighborhoods where they can help during this time. This Picture2, The DiJulius Groupincludes high risk populations such as frontline workers, paramedics, childcare workers, postal workers and many more. One of the initiatives they have implemented was the creation of a handmade, scent-free soap in their Vancouver and Toronto manufacturing facilities—the first ever. 100% of this product was donated to hospitals, medical clinics and First Nations Health Organizations across Canada. LUSH also sent gifts of appreciation to doctors, nurses, and healthcare professionals in Arizona, California, Colorado, Oklahoma, New York, New Jersey, Maryland, and Texas.

Through their Charitable Giving Program, LUSH provided 6 rapid response grants in partnerships with Indigenous-led COVID-19 relief funds that will support tribal communities and organizations to bring food, water, and other emergency supplies to some of the greatest impacted individuals, families and communities.

To date, they have arranged deliveries of tens of thousands of LUSH products to non-profit organizations on the frontlines that are providing support to vulnerable communities in Vancouver and Toronto, where their manufacturing and head offices are based. LUSH has gone above & beyond with their response to COVID-19. “We know how important it is to come together during times of crisis and support our communities across the country. We’re privileged and honoured to be able to offer our support, and believe that if you have the ability, then you have a responsibility to engage and support those who serve the community each and every day,” said Rebecca Peters, PR & Events Manager for LUSH Cosmetics.

The DiJulius Group

The DiJulius Group is helping small businesses get back on their feet as quickly as possible during these unprecedented times. We know small businesses typically don’t have the time, manpower or budget to train all their employees on the soft skills they would like them to have. We also know that now is a great time for businesses to take advantage of the extra down time and use it to train their team members on how to provide World-Class Customer Service.

MCTshot, The DiJulius GroupThe DiJulius Group is offering a series of Customer Service Training videos to companies that are independent, non-franchised, single location, small businesses under $5M in annual revenue. My Customer Experience Trainer (My CX Trainer) will provide your frontline team members with the tools, tips and best practices that are needed to be a leader in customer experience. And those companies that are not eligible ($5M+ or part of a franchise system) can receive a complimentary call with a Customer Experience Consultant.

We are proud to offer this service to organizations so that as they reopen, they can stand out by providing a world-class customer experience that will blow their customers away! We hope that this will help them rebuild both their business and brand identity in their community.

*Related- Why Your Best Is NOT Good Enough

2.    Article You Need to Read to Believe


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The Absolute Worst Customer Service EVER

Wedding videographer refuses to refund after fiancée dies in car crash. Then the company posts the following message on what would have been the couple’s wedding day:

‘We hope you sob and cry all day for what would have been your wedding day.’

I was confident this had to be fake news, until I checked several other sources and it appears to be a true story.

 3.    Stop With Negative Cues


Eureka, The DiJulius Group

This is an actual photo taken inside Eureka Glass company located in Northern California. They clearly want to make sure their customers are aware of what they are NOT responsible for. Eureka won’t even take responsibility if they break your glass.

“Don’t punish 100% of your customers for what you are afraid 2% might try to do.”

—John R. DiJulius III


4.     Short Video You Need to Watch & Share With Your Team

Be The Best Decision Your Employees Have Ever Made—Employees want something to brag about. Let them brag about how amazing their company is and was during these crazy times.


5.    Episode #6 of The Customer Service Revolution Podcast

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Episode #6  – John DiJulius talks with Jim McManemon, a 30-year executive with The Ritz-Carlton Hotels on how to build a world-class customer service culture with young front-line employees who typically have never experienced great customer service before. Here are just a few takeaways:

  • Secrets to selecting the best employee candidates during the interview process.
  • Empowering your employees to correct mistakes and re-win guests over.
  • The power of rewarding and recognizing employees.
  • The secret to world-class leadership.



6. Resource To Help Take Your Customer Experience To The Next Level

Be a hero to your customers. Now is the time to show your customers that you care more about them than just getting their business. Many of our customers have sent this link, of my free webinar Leading in a Crisis, to their clients to help them through these times.

About The Author

Jess Pischel

As a former Customer Experience Consultant with The DiJulius Group, Jess  leads clients in generating ideas, turning those ideas into systems, and then implementing and executing them enterprise wide.