Pick Any Two

We used to have a sign up in our offices at PowerServe that read:

For service that meets your needs, choose two of the following:

  • Quality
  • Speed
  • Price

Let’s face it, we’re a culture that expects all three. We want convenience, high quality, and extra low prices. That’s why Wal-Mart is so popular – because for most people Wal-Mart is an ideal place to shop for them. But you’re not going to get all three. You’ve got to give somewhere.Wal-Mart is convenient, because you can get all the stuff you need (and don’t need) all conveniently in one place. No problem, right? Wrong. Wal-Mart is a victim of its’ own success. Because so many people shop at Wal-Mart, there are more customers in their stores. This equates to longer lines when you want to check out. Right? That $.29 cents you saved doesn’t seem like much when you factor in that you had to wait 10 mintues to check-out at a busy store. Their automotive department is a prime example of this problem. They offer oil changes for less than anyone else out there. They’re using quality motor oils and whatnot, but when you go, you’re pretty much guaranteed a wait. Just because you can get an oil change for $29.99 doesn’t help the fact that you’re going to lose 2 hours of your time while you wait for a tech to get around to your car. Is saving a few bucks more important than your time?Tonight, I went to a Jiffy Lube and spent a little more for an oil change. Know what happened? I pulled my car in right away, and they had my oil changed, truck vaccuumed out, lights checked, tires refilled, air filter changed, in 10 minutes. I had 6 people working on my car at once. By the time I went to the waiting room, I had an associate approach me in order to check out. (I didn’t even have the chance to sit down.) Yeah, it cost me more by going to Jiffy Lube, but they didn’t waste my time. They provided great service right away and it’s more than worth it to me to pay a little more for the service because of that.I like saving money, but I hate wasting time. (Sorry if this is random… I wanted to get some thoughts out on this before I went to bed tonight.)