Lee Valley Pricing Policy

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About a month ago I recieved an order I placed on Lee Valley's website, amongst the booty was a ROS Sander Sitter. Today ..out of the blue ..I got a refund check for the whooping sum of $4.45. The letter that came with it said .... with certian price reductions in the 2004/2005 catalog and my recent purchase they were issuing me a refund of the old vs new price in accordance with their pricing policy. Well I am impressed that act of business acumen will now result in alot of future purchases, from me, that might or might not have gone their way. Joe
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I forget what I bought from them, but they sent me a $30 something check one time because they were able to produce whatever it was at a lesser cost. Once, I sent two router table tops back to them and the third still wasn't flat. I requested that someone who really new about the item call me back. The engineer that designed and worked with the manufacturing of the router table system called me back one evening from his house in Canada on his dime. We B.S.'d about an hour about woodworking and Lee Valley in general. Great guy. BTW, the top is hand hammered to a slight convex arch. Tightening the fence or slight downpressure flattens it. A table with a slight convex is better than one with a concave deflection. I guess I sent back two perfectly good router tables.
I have never had a bad experience with Lee Valley. They can have my business anytime.
Preston

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wrote:
I have never got refund from Lee Valley, but from what I read here and my personal experienced, they are the nicest people to do businesses with and that is why I rather buy my band saw blades from them, regardless if it's Viking or Timberwolf. I know they gave the BEST value from my money. I will support them to to the point even if they cost more (I know they will never take advantage ot it). We need to teach those money grabber, that honestly and customer care indeed do pay. Buy Viking's or "Timberwolf" from Lee Valley!

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"Joey" wrote in message

What a difference compared to the way so many other companies are run these days. It would be interesting to note whether there is an MBA making management decisions at Lee Valley ... my bet is that there is not.
A good rule of thumb: Companies whose top management _genuinely_ like people (and you can generally tell by the humor that escapes from the pages of catalogs, posts, etc.) insure doing business with them is a pleasure ... Southwest Airlines also comes to mind in this regard.
--
www.e-woodshop.net
Last update: 7/10/04
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Swingman wrote:

The $45 out of Lee Valley's coffers into its customers' hands has bought them the kind of good advertising/good will that several hundred dollars could not hope capture. I'd say that's pretty savvy business acumen which one could hope would be taught at business schools.
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There are still a few companies out there with the attitude that if you treat the customer right, they'll keep coming back with more business.
LLBean, is a good example. If you don't like it, send it back, and they'll refund your money, no questions asked. Even if it was your fault for ordering the wrong thing.
There used to be a company called Barient which made hardware for boats. A bunch of years ago, I bought a used boat which had a pair of Barient winches which didn't work very well. At the time, they must have been about 15 years old. I called up Barient to get advice on how to repair them, and was told that there was a known problem with those winches; after many years, the plastic drum base would swell a bit and the drum would stick. The solution was to re-machine the base. The guy gave me all the specs on what diameter it needed to be re-machined to, then offered if I wasn't set up to do the work myself, he'd be happy to do it for me, no charge, if I'd send them in. This is on 15 year old hardware, third owner, no questions asked about receipts or warranties or if they'd been abused. Just "we made them, we'll fix them, no charge".
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Canada that almost sent me shopping elsewhere. If there was an elsewhere to mail order shop in Canada that is. I'm sure she is costing the company customers.
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Garry wrote:

Knowing how they do business, I'm expect they'd like to hear directly from you about this "know-it-all". There's a good chance that her behavior or her job title would change.
IME, customer satisfaction is their absolute top priority and they wouldn't take such foolishness lightly.
Chuck Vance
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wrote:

Maybe, maybe not.

understand that everyone is entitled to a bad day now and then. If I run across her again I will probably take that advice, but it's been a few months since I hung up on her.

Almost cable company customer service quality.<g>
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Brings to mind the Packard Motor Car slogan "Ask the man that owns one", shame they no longer exist but I wish they did!

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Roy Smith wrote:

Yeah. That was a sad story--good company, best products in the world, good attitude, but small enough to be vulnerable to a hostile takeover. They're missed.
--
--John
Reply to jclarke at ae tee tee global dot net
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Swingman writes:

I've met Rob Lee. I don't know--didn't think to ask--whether or not he has an MBA, but if he does, it doesn't seem to have infected his thinking as it has with so many others. He gives an impression of enjoyment and of great pride in what he and his family have developed with Lee Valley. I walked what seemed like the entire Lee Valley/Veritas world with him in a whirlwind tour and saw many of the things the companies were working on. The impression that one gets is of great efficiency aided by a sense of humor attached to great pride in what one is doing, both for Rob and for the employees I met.

I agree.
Charlie Self "I have always felt that a politician is to be judged by the animosities he excites among his opponents." Sir Winston Churchill
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On 05 Sep 2004 09:23:48 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@aol.comnotforme (Charlie Self) calmly ranted:

I've grokked much of that from email interaction and Wreck contacts with Rob, and in dealings with the company. Class act all the way around. www.LeeValley.com

Don't forget Jim Ray at www.McFeelys.com .
=========================================================CAUTION: Do NOT look directly into laser with remaining eyeball! ========================================================= http://www.diversify.com Comprehensive Website Design
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Larry Jaques responds:

I've known Jim at least slightly for a long time now, and I've liked him just as long. Good businessman with a clear conscience. Probably not as unusual as some of us think, but always good to find.
Charlie Self "I have always felt that a politician is to be judged by the animosities he excites among his opponents." Sir Winston Churchill
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Re; The refunds; I wonder if the reason to give the customer the refund has to do with the ethics (it's the right thing to do) or the business "right thing" to do- it'll keep them coming back . That's the cynic in me. From the small dealing I've had with the company, they're top notch. It ultimately may not make a difference to the consumer why they get the buck back, it does makes a difference to me. Pat
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I've received two refunds from them, both a few weeks or so before the new catalogues came out. I think the reason has more to do with their goal of complete customer satisfaction.
I don't know of very many other businesses that enjoy such a high degree of customer loyalty and repeat business.
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Pat -
We do it because it's the right thing to do. This isn't a "public" policy (in that it's not stated anywhere) - but it is one we do automatically. Just as we put the price decreases (500+) into effect as soon as we knew the prices would be dropping - and well in advance of mailing a catalog.
If you think about - it everyone treated customers "fairly" and equally, what we do wouldn't really be that remarkable, would it?? We're just trying to operate as if we were a small business, and you were going to be buying from us for a long time.....
Cheers -
Rob
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We appreciate it and it seems to be working. Ed
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Doesn't really matter. As I learned when I got MY MBA... the right thing to do is usually the same as the business "right-thing" if you are thinking long term. Makes it easy to run your business correctly - follow your conscience.
If these two ideas conflict then you are probably thinking short-term.
BTW - I don't think it is the MBA that ruins their minds, their minds were ruined to begin with and the MBA only magnifies that.
-CJ
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