When Black Friday comes around, you will typically find me sneaking out of the house around 4am to stroll blissfully around town in the cold, crisp air. But not this year. I wasn’t very motivated to head out, so instead, I slept in (all the way till 7am!) and then curled up on the couch with my laptop to shop with ease.
My husband and I decided that we were going to purchase an X-Box that was on sale at Target for our son. Not for Christmas, but for his birthday several weeks after. It was a good price, and fortunately for me, they were selling it online. So I got out my shiny little Target card and ordered up one X-Box.
About a week or so later there is a knock on my door. UPS was delivering packages. As I hauled them in, I noticed something odd. There were two identically-shaped boxes from Target. I was puzzled. Did I order something else and I’d forgotten about it? (It’s so easy to shop online, sometimes you forget!) Or did Target do what I think they did? My son was upstairs, so I quickly shoved the boxes into another room, opened each and peered inside. Yep. I had two X-Box systems.
Now, for many people, I’m sure this wouldn’t be a dilemma. “Too bad – I get a free X-Box!” But the minute I saw that second one, I knew I couldn’t keep it. Because I believe in karma. And right now things are really good for me and my family. And I am not about to do anything to mess that up. And quite frankly, I’m just no good at being devious and dishonest.
So, I took the extra “gift” to my nearest Target store to return. When I explained what happened, the customer at the counter next to me stated “Wow! That’s really nice of you to do that.” Was it really that shocking? Were these tiny “good deeds” so uncommon?
The Target CSR cheerfully clicked buttons, scanned paperwork and told me $140 and change would be credited back to my account. Uh – no, that would be great, but then my other one would be free. “OH!” she exclaimed. Then she got on the phone and began calling and chatting with people in various far off locations. After about 15 minutes of “what about this” and “what about that” she hung up. “You have two choices,” she said. “We can keep it, or you can keep it. It’s too much of a problem to get it back into the system.” (Apparently it throws all the inventory numbers off everywhere!)
So – I kept it. Not really of course. I’m going to donate it to a non-profit organization I’m associated with so that they can use it for a raffle or auction. It wouldn’t be right to keep it or give it to family or friends.
Honestly can truly be the best policy. My karma is in check, and organization is going to make some money for their needs, and someone will win a cool prize. It’s the gift that keeps on giving.
25+ years of business experience. 12+ years of virtual experience.