Thom Dance owns the busiest UPS store in the Dallas/Fort Worth area and the 32nd busiest in the country. But that doesn’t keep the store’s staff taking time to learn their customers’ names.
As people walk into the store Tuesday, the staff greets most of them by their first name.
"We strive to know our customers," Dance said. "It’s almost like a place you go where everybody knows your name."
Dance opened The UPS Store at 3818 Cedar Springs Road on Nov. 1, 1999 and has earned loyal customers in the near decade of business.
He is the sole owner of the Cedar Springs store, but co-owns four other UPS stores in Dallas. The Cedar Springs store was his second venture.
"This is the best one by far," Dance said.
The North Texas GLBT Chamber of Commerce named Dance’s UPS store "Business of the Year" during the Chamber’s recent Business Excellence Awards Dinner.
Dance said there are many factors behind the store’s success, including customer loyalty and the atmosphere of the store.
"We stress a fun, lively atmosphere," he said, adding that he wants customers to see the employees having fun so that they will have a good time, too.
Dance said part of the businesses’ success is due to its involvement in the community. He is active in the GLBT Chamber, the Cedar Springs Merchant Association and The Dallas Gay Professionals Group.
Customers use the UPS Store for packing, shipping, mailing, faxing and post office box services. Dance said store employees also package and send a lot of antiques and the store has earned the regional title for sending the most freight.
"We usually have freight going out daily," Dance said.
Store manager Brice Turner said 85 percent of their customers are locals, while the other 15 percent come from neighboring areas.
In addition to diversity among the staff, there is also variety among the customers.
"We have all ages and all diversities," Dance said of his customers. "We never know who is going to come in the door. There are customers from all walks of life."
This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition April 18, 2008.