The Hunt for Rules and Regulations

09.15.10:  Here it is mid September and I’m wondering where all the time has gone.  Two weeks ago we were sweltering in the heat and now we are enjoying the late summer, early fall temperatures.  Fall has to be one of my favorite times of the year because the hectic, non-stop pace of summer turns into a more mellow, laid back way of life, sort of…..unless you are a business owner!  In our case, not only do we have our fishing customers, but we also have the customer that is preparing for the upcoming fall hunting seasons.   With this preparation comes the need to have knowledge of the hunting regulations and licensing requirements.  That in itself can be a nightmare and is probably one of the single, most talked about topics in the store.

Many of you have most likely already discovered that the DNR no longer publishes the multi-paged, information filled, “done in color” regulation booklet.  They have really condensed the regulation guide and then a lot of the  information that should be in the guide is not in the guide.  And this little fact was recently discovered when a customer called the store a week or so ago to inquire as to the start of fall turkey season!   “Twin Lakes Fish and Game, this is Terri.”   “Yeh, when’s the fall turkey season start?”  “Well, lets take a look at the regulation booklet.  I wouldn’t want to give you bad or incorrect information.”  Long pause as I leaf through the booklet looking for the date………..meanwhile, I’m thinking to myself how frustrating it is – all I want is information on the fall turkey seasons.  As a business owner, one of my pet peeves is that we should ever provide misinformation, especially on a law or regulation.   “Well sir, I can’t seem to find it in the book, give me a second and I will try to find it on the internet site.  After a minute or two of navigating around the IN.gov sight which IS NOT user friendly, I finally locate the dates for the fall turkey season, along with the legal weapons.  After apologizing to the caller for the delay in information, he is finally given the information he had called for.

Following the phone call, I re-read the hunting guide again, thinking I had just overlooked the dates in my haste to provide fast, courteous service.  And then I found it – the dreaded “See hunting.IN.gov for turkey and ruffed grouse season information.” What, are you kiddin’ me????  I don’t feel like this is customer service and to assume that ALL hunters have access to a computer let alone internet service is insane!  However, it is a sign of the times and we have virtually no choice but to learn to live with it.  So just know that future education on hunting rules and regulations will require the BASIC guide available at the store, internet access and most likely a call to Twin Lakes Fish & Game for clarification!

Terri

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