Suffered a disappointing experience with one of my own customers this morning, especially galling as I’d given them a bit of reciprocal trading. I arrived at one of their facilities (where they were unaware I was both supplier and customer) and all started well. Then during my transaction I was dealt with in a matter-of-fact manner, and at the end, their guy was clearly more interested in his agenda than mine, and left me with the memory of his final shockingly disrespectful actions – he charged me more than he should and hadn’t bothered to explain the difference, expecting me to simply sign a form and trot off none the wiser.
This spectacularly unimpressive episode reminded me of a time when I worked as a cub rep for an erp software house way back in the days of green on black screens. One of the big bosses was called Howard. He was perhaps a touch distanct from the rest of the salesteam, being teetotal, possibly as a consequence of his practising mormon faith. I never felt either of this facts mattered a jot (he never talked about either of them at work) but many of the guys would question his sales ability behind his back and bemoan the inability he had to make a decision when it came to change, always exhibiting strong preferances for the status quo.
Anyway, one time he’d been on holiday and upon his return we had a sales meeting where at the end he (out of character) expressed his anger that some empty cardboard boxes for deliveries before he’d gone where still cluttering up our reception area when he returned.
He reckoned that it showed no-one really gave a toss about the workplace and the company in general. For a few of the cases there, he was probably right.
The message is though, that there are tell-tale signs that cannot be faked that give a true indication of whether a sales (or any customer-facing) person genuinely care. And I will think twice before offering a sale to someone who is at best aloof, at worst contemptuous, again.