Kim & The Little Zookeeper

Every time someone sends me a red shoes experience, it makes me step back and re-remember how simple it really is to treat someone with kindness and create goodwill for your business. This story is from my good friend and coworker Dustin Qualls. It stars someone who understands that anyone who visits your store is a guest of your brand and should be treated as such, whether they make a purchase that day or not.

This red shoes rock star understands that a commercial transaction is much more valuable when it’s paired with a human connection. —LM


I thought I’d send over a picture and tell you about a Red Shoes Experience my wife and I had last week.

A few months back, my wife and I were looking to kill some time with our daughter, Livia, while waiting for a table at a local restaurant. We saw a Petco next door and decided Livia might like to check it out.

On that first visit, she decided she liked the ferrets the most, even though they smelled bad enough to earn the title “stinky mouse.” Now, whenever she sees a Petco sign, Livia says “stinky mouse!” and asks to go inside.

Just last week we visited another Petco location, again just to kill some time, and an employee named Kim took it upon herself to make our visit special. She took Livia around and opened up the “stinky mouse” cage so our daughter could hold and pet the ferrets. Kim also asked if Livia wanted to feed the birds, giving her some treats and letting her play zookeeper for a little while.

Kim’s attitude and friendliness instantly won Livia—and my wife and me—over.

We aren’t even in the market for a pet at the moment, but I left knowing that, when the time comes, we’d come back to that specific Petco and have Kim help us adopt the right critter.

Thank you, Kim, for making our visit to Petco special by going that extra mile with my daughter!