The Do Unto Others Principle
Organization is not one of my strongest suits. In that regard from time to time I make mistakes. Very recently this happened with my Etsy account. We set up Etsy in the very early days of our company thinking we might use it as a platform (and we still might). As time passed we shifted our focus to our site and the Etsy account entirely slipped my mind. Then last week someone placed an order on Etsy. It had been over a year since anyone had logged on and we missed the order completely. The first I realized we had done so was a week later when the customer reached out asking for tracking information. At that point we had a choice to make. We had not filled the order. I think there are companies that might fudge it in these circumstances “oh it is delayed, not sure what happened, lost in the mail” etc. etc. It has been a goal of mine since we started not to participate in that type of dubious practice. I messaged the buyer and was entirely honest. I apologized and confessed to an oversight on my part. I also issued a refund but promised to send the order anyway. Less than an hour later she had placed an order three times the size of the original on the site.
I firmly believe in the fundamental goodness of people. We are not unerring but when we accept responsibility, understand our weaknesses and try to right our mistakes I believe the vast majority of people will offer forgiveness and place value in the upfront acceptance of onus.
Or maybe she just really wanted shampoo.