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Springfield, MO

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Personalized service heads way of the dodo

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A manifestation of the business environment in the twilight of the 20th century is the demise of locally owned retail stores that offer what I call, for lack of a better label, personalized service.

Admittedly, large stores and various and sundry franchisers can offer massive quantities of just about anything anyone might need. Assuming you can tolerate fender-to-fender traffic and going shoulder-to-shoulder with hordes of shoppers that make the conquering armies of Genghis Khan look like a group of elderly ladies out for a stroll, large volumes of merchandise is crammed into stores, probably at bargain prices.

Some think this spells convenience. If forging a path among thousands of cars to be crowded into a building the size of Utah, with twice its population, defines convenience for you, so be it.

Some of you may have forgotten what personalized service was like, others may be too young to have ever known it. Here's what I mean by personalized service. When I was old enough to buy my own clothes, I shopped at a men's clothing store in my hometown.

Once you became a regular customer, regardless of age and clothing budget, one of the salesmen became your exclusive salesman. If he was out when you came into the store, someone else would wait on you or you could come back later when he was in. My salesman knew me and my tastes so well that he would phone me when something came in he thought I would like[[In-content Ad]]

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