Archive for July 17th, 2010

HyTest Safety Footwear Fill A Need

July 17, 2010

CEO Peter Pittlekow tries out the RV

We’re back on the road again! And back to disrupting people at work! After almost a week in Elkhart getting new carpet in the Soles4Souls RV, we’re thrilled to be back at “work”. Our week started by visiting HyTest Safety Footwear in the Milwaukee area and thanking Peter Pittlekow and his staff for donating new shoes to us. HyTest® Safety Footwear manufactures occupational and safety footwear products. The entire staff was hard at work until we pulled in the parking lot with the RV and invited everyone for a tour.

I remember giving away shoes to a group of young adults who had been in foster care all their life. At 18, they “age out” of the system and end up on their own, often without the skills and resources needed to live independently. One boy came up to me and said, “I just got my first job and need steel toed shoes, which I can’t afford. Do you happen to have any steel toed boots?” I excitedly gave him a pair of just the boots he needed. Thanks to HyTest Safety Footwear, we’ve been able to provide sturdy boots to people across the US. How fun to meet people face to face that help contribute to Soles4Souls!

Wipe Your Feet Please!

July 17, 2010

Want a lesson in customer service? Spend some time with the staff at Thor Motorized Services in Elkhart, Indiana. That’s the company that “created” the Soles4Souls RV. Of course they built it without the bright blue wrap and numerous logos!
Because we give tours of the RV as we represent the shoe charity, our carpet was looking a bit worn. (Imagine having 100 or so people walk back and forth on your hall carpet every week.)
Thor graciously offered to install new carpet. This was a great relief, since Allan had been talking about possibly replacing it himself! Janae Kurtz and Jim Whitehead bent over backward to help us in any way they could. They arranged for us to have a rental car and hotel, in addition to checking out any additional repairs the RV might need. The staff found a leak from the driver’s window and immediately replaced the side wall and ordered us a new window. They didn’t overlook minor details either. We had lost a tiny bolt cover for the windshield wipers. Allan improvised by painting the bolt black. After our visit to Four Winds, we have the real deal.
Throughout our 4 day stay, I found more and more positive examples I could use when I do customer service workshops. To top it off, we’re coming back in October to do a shoe distribution in Elkhart. In the meantime, the employees at Thor will be bringing in their gently used shoes to donate to Soles4Souls!


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