When you go shopping have you ever found a favorite sales person or person who runs the check out? Do you look for that special person each time you go to that store?
I have at several stores, whether it’s shopping for a vehicle or getting ready to checkout at Target where I’ve found people who are polite, kind and go out of their way to make sure I have a good experience in their business. I always try to get in their line, have them help me with a purchase, and thank them for their helpfulness.
Thursday I shared a graphic on my Facebook page that said, “It costs $0.00 to be a decent person”.
Based on the amount of likes on this one graphic, I think it’s safe to assume many of you agree with that!
As Jason and I navigate this home building process we are learning important business lessons everyday. One lesson that has really surprised me is that many business people and the employees who work at various businesses really do not care about customer service or relationships. They do want your money…but that’s about it.
We have been to kitchen designers and different suppliers and have been really surprised with how salespeople have treated us. Some have been downright rude, while others have been very nice and professional.
For example, we visited one supplier that was a semi local business owned by a husband and wife. They were going to quote all of the cabinets for our new home. The cost of cabinets is crazy (about 10% of the total house cost). We first got some bad vibes they refused to meet us before school got out so we could come alone without kids. I called 3 weeks in advance to try to set an appointment but they refused until the week after because they were wrapping up a sale and were “too busy for us”. During this time the husband told our builder, ” Jenny has 5 kids, how busy can she be?”
When we did go to this business he and his wife got into a shouting match with each other after we traveled an hour to meet with them. They ran out of time to finish our design (which was fine with us, assuming we’d see the final blueprint when it was complete). After they got the blueprints finished, they refused to send any sketches to us and said they couldn’t meet again for 2 weeks. By this time we were halfway through June and I was busy with ball games, Nora’s therapy, choosing other things for the house like shingles and brick, and helping kids get ready for fair.
Also during this time we’d met a different kitchen designer. She set up a meeting with us to go over the quote, and “forgot” she had a destination wedding that same day we were to meet her. We ended up meeting with her assistant. The assistant never followed up on the changes we made to get a new quote. 5 weeks later I received a call from the designer wondering when she could get us to sign a contract.
Let me tell you about the designer we chose. He answered his phone each time we called. Even if he couldn’t meet when we first wanted to, he always found a day that worked for all of us within reasonable time. He was polite and willing to make changes to the design. He was not the most economical designer we met. He cost $6,000 more than the first designer and was cheaper than the 2nd designer.
We decided we’d rather make some sacrifices on other parts of our home to make up for going over budget. Rather than pay someone who is rude, ungrateful, and doesn’t care for their customers, we wanted to support someone who appreciated our business. I realize that there are far bigger jobs than ours but this is important to us and we were treated with respect.
It pays to be nice! Don’t get me wrong, we have a budget just like everyone else but I also believe in supporting businesses (and people) with values.
Have you noticed that some businesses provide service and others just don’t seem to care? What do you do in those circumstances? Do you shop locally to support those in your community?
Do you think it pays to be nice?