An out of state client recently asked me to get a quote for the replacement of two large windows for the house he owns and rents out in Colorado. In addition to them being old and inefficient, they don’t lock correctly. He wanted new vinyl windows. I wasn’t sure where to start so I typed in “replacement windows lafayette” into Google. The first name to come up was a company out of a northern Denver suburb that I had heard advertising on radio so I thought I would give them a call first.
I was very up front with them about who I was and what I was looking for. After taking my information down they asked me to hold while they checked their schedule.
When they came back I was asked whether I had authority to make a decision on the windows. I said no. I was asked to hold.
They then asked if the owner would be able to come to the appointment as well. I reminded them that the owner was out of state and that they probably wouldn’t want to make a special trip back for this purpose. (tongue firmly in cheek) I was asked to hold.
When they came back they said that they wouldn’t be able to schedule an appointment with me unless I had authority to make a decision on the spot. With that my hair stood up on my neck. And to think I was so close to meeting with their highly trained salesman who would have loved to put me in a beautiful set of windows on the spot! Thanks for nothing.
Fresh on the heels of making the first call, I called a local glass company to try my luck. I gave them the same information and was told that the estimator was out. I left my name, number and address and in less than two minutes I was off the phone.
I received a call the next morning and I was able to very quickly schedule an appointment. The day of the appointment the estimator showed up 5 minutes early, made some measurements asked what I was looking for and then left. No pressure, no up sell. They were there to serve.
This experience gave me a great example of the difference between a company with a sales mentality and one with a service mentality. Zig Ziglar always said “that if you help enough people get what they want you will have everything in the world that you want”. This is so true!
I didn’t want to be pressured, or sold something. I certainly didn’t want the pressure of evaluating a “one night only” special deal with no chance to do my research. All I wanted was to be able to get a reasonable price on a few new windows with the least hassle possible and Company 2 was able to do that for me.
Think about your purchase transactions (cars, appliances, technology etc.) and you will agree that the ones where you felt “served” were positive and the ones where you felt “sold” were not so good.
This got me to thinking about my job. As a Realtor, my job is to help people buy and sell homes. Most people would characterize what I do as a sales job. But I see it differently. My first goal every day is to be of service. I have a long term frame of reference and I know if I can serve people today in any capacity with honest motives, that I will be rewarded for those efforts sometime down the line. For me, it’s less about karma than it is the principle of the sowing and the reaping. One comes before the other. I’m here to serve in a totally transparent, no pressure way. I think people can tell the difference.
See also Kearney Realty’s core values.