Currency of Empty Pockets

How we turn lost items into opportunities to build trust and client loyalty.
Currency of Empty Pockets
photo by Bernard Hermant
Table of Contents
In: Client Retention, Loyalty

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Laundry Owners Warehouse, is a “One Stop Shop” with over 74,000 replacement parts, a full line of soap and supplies, and a wide variety of used commercial laundry equipment, all in stock and available at

Laundry Owners Warehouse also sells new commercial laundry equipment and is a proud member of the Dexter Laundry family, “Made in the USA” since 1894.

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In the hustle and bustle of daily life, it's easy for people to forget things in their laundry. From loose change to keys, credit cards, and even more unusual items, we often find forgotten treasures in our clients' orders. 

The question is, what should we do with what we find?

Keep it? Return it? One thing that guides us is our choice to be missionaries rather than mercenaries in the garment care business.

You can read more about that here.

Addressing this challenge is more than just returning lost items — it's about building trust and loyalty with our clients. 

When you return items that clients do not know about, it shows them they can trust you with their belongings. It also sets a moral example for our teams, emphasizing that long-term business relationships are more valuable than short-term gains, like keeping $5.00 found in an order.

According to the 2021 Edelman Trust Barometer, 61% of people say trust in a brand is a deal breaker or deciding factor in their buying decision. 

That's a significant number of potential clients who could be won over or lost based on our business's honesty and transparency.

Common Solutions and Shortcomings to Lost and Found Items

Some laundromats may discard nonvaluable items or keep any money they find. 

This approach misses a valuable opportunity to build trust and loyalty with clients and risks damaging your reputation if a client ever discovers that their items were not returned.

Our Approach: Turning Lost Items into Opportunities

I see lost items as an opportunity to 'wow' our clients. 

We have a standard operating procedure (SOP) for when something is found in an order. We emphasize honesty to every team member and remind them that trustworthiness pays off in the long run.

Here’s how it works:

Whenever we find an item in an order, we place it into a special lost and found bag labeled with the client's name and order number. This bag is then placed at the top of the order when packing, ensuring that it catches the client's attention when they receive their order.

A bag like this from Cleaner’s Supply works great!

The Power of Honesty and Trust

Over the years, we've found all sorts of items in our clients’ orders. Money is the most common, but we've also found keys, cards, adult toys, and even marijuana. We've returned the item to the client each time, often leading to surprise and gratitude.

A memorable incident was when a client had left a couple of hundred dollars in her order without realizing it. We found the money during the sorting process and packaged it nicely in her order. 

When she discovered what we'd done, she was so grateful that she teared up and promised to be a client for life.

Honesty and transparency are no longer optional in today's business world; they're a new business imperative. 

In the garment care industry, trust is everything. By handling lost items with honesty and integrity, we can build strong relationships with our clients beyond mere transactions. 

So next time you find a forgotten item in an order, remember: it's not just a lost item; it's an opportunity to build trust, loyalty, and wow the client.

That's all I got for today.

P.S. Let me know your thoughts on this editorial by rating it below.

Thinking about, the thinking of laundry

From the thoughts of the marketer, Adam Rogers

Trust is the foundation of every successful sale.

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