Dalton—The World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) has named Bruce Jones, co-owner of Carpet Mart, an independently owned store in Louisville, Ky., as the first recipient of the Tom Jennings Champion Award. The new award celebrates and recognizes an individual in the retail flooring community who captures the spirit of Jennings’ commitment to excellence in customer service.
Throughout his long career, Jennings has profoundly impacted the retail flooring industry through his conviction and commitment to raising the professionalism of flooring individuals and placing the highest value on the customer experience. He is best known for his mantra: “They say that champions don’t do one thing 100% better, they do a hundred things 1% better.”
“Tom Jennings sets such a high bar for customer service in this industry,” Jones said. “It is a tremendous honor to be chosen as the recipient of this award. I would also like to acknowledge my business partner, Aaron Kinser, as none of this would be possible without his support and providing me the time and opportunity to serve.”
Jones has been with Carpet Mart for nearly 30 years and purchased the store in 2017. His business philosophy is ingrained throughout the company and is rooted in hard work, commitment to excellence and the guiding principle: “Do the right thing.” Among other things, his standout success is attributable to his people. The company prides itself on being not just a flooring store but a company committed to its customers, staff and community.
A key aspect of the company’s commitment to its staff is adjusting their hours to give them more family time. Jones has created a company culture that prioritizes both customers and his staff. His emphasis on staff physical and mental wellness ensures his team comes to work rested and recharged to provide the best customer service to their patrons.
Community involvement has been a cornerstone of the business since its inception. Each quarter it partners with a new organization, including the YMCA LiveStrong Program, Habitat for Humanity, Scarlet Hope and Dare to Care, to name a few.
“Bruce has embedded first-rate customer experience into the very fabric of the organization,” said Freida Staten, vice president of marketing, communications & membership, WFCA. “Through his non-commissioned sales representatives and stellar installers, he ensures customers receive the highest-quality products and services. He is committed to his business, community, team and team members’ families. Bruce embodies the spirit of the award by understanding that the only truly unique offering a company has to sell is the people in its organization.”
Mark Mulliniks, regional vice president at Shaw, added, “I have worked with Bruce for 30-plus years, and he has always strived for excellence in customer service through constant improvement and constant change. His interactions to please his customers, nourish relationships and support those who have helped with his success are seen by all who know him. He has created a habit within the Carpet Mart workplace, not just an act, and this is what sets him and his employees apart from most.”