Tom Stillman is the anti-Stan Kroenke. Can we just get that out of the way right now? He is. He is a man who knows what it takes to energize and engage a fan base and make customers feel valued.
For those that didn’t see, the Blues owner was in the main lobby as fans strolled into the Scottrade Center prior to Thursday night’s 3-2 win over the Minnesota Wild. Stillman was right there shaking hands with as many people as he could find actually thanking them for coming out.
Is this real life?
Is that possible? Someone who actually CARES about what his customers think? Someone who values every last person who walks in (and doesn’t see them as just a dollar sign)?
St. Louis got such a bad reputation from the Rams leaving for Los Angeles because Stan Kroenke went out of his way to disengage the fan base. He did whatever he could to make them feel devalued so he could go to his fellow owners and plead defeat.
Most of the country fell for it and – still – feels as if St. Louis is a baseball only town. The truth is we know it’s much more than that. And Stillman is going out of his way to prove it.
It wasn’t just the thanking of the fans prior to the game. It was the thanking of the players after it as well. He was in the locker room late Thursday night talking to players.
So if you’re cynical enough to think Stillman’s ploy with the fans was nothing more than a stunt to be seen, understand being in the locker room following the game is the opposite.
He was in a place few could see him.
Isn’t it great to have an owner who gets it?
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