South Florida’s pool season begins in April. That’s when Palmetto Bay’s Pinch-A-Penny store revs up to make sure their 3000-plus repeat customers have crystal clear water and expert advice all season long.
Located in the Kings Bay Shopping Center, this franchise Pinch-A-Penny is anything but ordinary. Even before you walk in, you can feel the extraordinary personal service and attention to detail.
The family-owned store is run by the Kavanaugh family. Father Larry encouraged his two sons, Chris and Kevin, to acquire the store in 1994 because he felt his sons could really thrive with the business. He was right. Within two years, store sales doubled.
The reason is simple: customer service. After many years in the supermarket business, Larry knows how to treat customers. Chris and Kevin do as well. And, they impart that stellar knowledge onto their employees. “We never sell customers things they don’t need and we make sure we greet them first… sometimes even before they walk in the door,” explains Larry. Kevin adds, “we take the service outside the store. If we have a body available, we meet the customer at the car.
Jason Armengol has been with Pinch-A-Penny for about 6 months. He enjoys testing customer pool water because it allow him to interact and educate consumers about how to care for their own pools.
Kevin Kavanaugh does most of the hiring and training, “We hire from the neighborhood. We take our customers’ kids and recruite from the various sports teams in the area,” says Kevin. “We believe in the community and I think the community believes in us.”
“Each employee gets two full weeks of training and they learn about everything. We don’t want our customers knowing more than our staff,” Larry adds, “This way our customers get superior service every time.”
The business is a family affair. Mother Debbie is involved too. This year her outdoor furniture store (Backyard Designs) was combined into the pool store space. Larry explains, “Now our customers have one-stop shopping for all their backyard needs.”
Kevin adds, “At this store, everyone gets treated fairly and we don’t judge anyone. Of the 200+ Pinch-A-Penny franchises in Florida, Georgia and Alabama, we feel we are one of the best and try to excel each and every day to win our customer’s respect and business.”