My friend and fellow disability advocate Laurie and I communicated recently about whether the disability community really puts its money where its mouth is when it comes to patronizing disability-aware businesses. “Do I shop at our local Walmart, for example, over the local Target, because I know they employ a young man who uses a wheelchair as a greeter at the Walmart, and I have no knowledge of any disability hiring at our local Target?” Laurie asked in a rhetorical moment. “Absolutely!” she continued. “Despite the fact that I’d ordinarily favor the Target store because it has more products that I like.” She went on to say that she’d once driven past two Paneras just to get to the one Panera that she knew had hired a local student from one of our high schools. She spoke personally to the manager about why she made the effort to patronize that particular store. “The manager seemed a little taken aback but pleased,” Laurie said. ” But, in the end does the Walmart know that I shop there because of the greeter? Did my glowing comments to the Panera manager make a difference?”
Yes Laurie, they do! There really is a way: www.jjslist.com is your easy, free tool to do it. No postage required.
Companies that can make the biggest impact in disability-aware customer service are now aware of the power of social media to impact their reputations. They PAY social media people to monitor their reputations on-line. So, when you post a review on www.jjslist.com about that Walmart that hires people with disabilities (over Target!), or about that Panera we tweet it and use all of our social media tools to let the world know what is being said by the disability community about the disability awareness of businesses.
And guess what? It influences the consumer thinking of people who DON’T have disability in their lives. Yes, Laurie, there is a way, and it’s not Santa Claus. When you post your reviews at jjslist.com, it’s easy, it’s free and it will make a difference for everyone.