Flowers in the Winter: One Florist’s Gift to CES Oklahoma City West
In the dead of winter, a bouquet of lively spring flowers arrived for City Electric Supply Oklahoma City West.
“We were shocked. Not just by the gesture but by the flowers themselves. They were fresh, spring flowers, something you don’t normally see in the wintertime,” said CES Oklahoma City West Branch Manager Gary Mayes.
Where did they come from? What were they for? No one at the branch could figure it out. But then they did some digging and discovered that Capitol Hill Florist sent them in an effort to spread kindness to fellow local businesses.
Supporting Local Businesses
Capitol Hill Florist and CES Oklahoma City West are in the same area, but they share something else in common. They are both family-owned businesses. And that feels about right because the uniquely warm gesture seems like the kind that would come from a family-owned business.
“We’ve been family owned and operated since 1932,” said Capitol Hill Florist’s Marketing Coordinator, and fourth-generation florist, Chet Whitnah. “I’ve been sending bouquets to randomly-selected local businesses once a week since I took on this position, carrying on a tradition we began several years prior to that.”
Since taking over two years ago, Chet has sent flowers to approximately 60 local businesses. The person running it might have changed, but the meaning behind the act has stayed consistent.
“It’s a way to brighten their week,” said Chet. “It’s something they can see when they walk in. It feels really good to do, and we’ve gotten a lot of great feedback from the local businesses we’ve sent them to.”
Setting an Example
For Capitol Hill Florist, it was a way to support their community and make someone’s day. For CES Oklahoma City West, it was a source of inspiration.
“They were so kind with that gesture,” said Mayes. “They invested in an act of kindness. Even in the economic uncertainty of COVID, they extended this gesture to help make other people’s days better.”
And in the time of COVID, that’s no small thing. Just ask Vanessa Sosa, a relationship banker at First United Bank Oklahoma City — another recipient of random flowers from Capitol Hill Florist.
“It’s been really tough for everybody,” said Vanessa about working in the pandemic. “It’s been different, and it’s made everything a little bit harder. But that simple act of kindness from Capitol Hill Florist really impacted us. They’re setting an example for other businesses around here in Oklahoma City.”
How has it been an example specifically for CES Oklahoma City West? Gary’s happy to answer.
“It makes me want to give more to our community, to brighten someone else’s day,” said Gary. “I want to continue supporting our customers and making them feel just as appreciated as we did when we got the flowers.”
“It’s really important to spread positivity and love, especially around Valentine’s Day,” added Vanessa. “We see the importance of helping out the people in our whole community. It’s not just about making money, but building relationships.”
In a time of limited interaction, Capitol Hill Florist built relationships with two local businesses. Like the flowers that bloomed in the dead of winter, we almost appreciate them more because they came in such a difficult time, despite such obvious challenges.