I guess I’m not a very good business man. I mean if you compare me & the stereotypical tycoon type that is described in all the guru books, I fit NONE of the definitions.
I might shave twice in one week, I’m always dirty from crawling around the belly of a home, I never do business from my cell phone & almost NEVER try to sell anyone, anything at any time. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’ve ‘unsold’ enough business in the last few years that any other company could easily make a decent route out of. Nope, you won’t find me in the sales hall of fame anytime soon.
That said, answer my office phones on any one day of the week and you’d swear I was the biggest wheeler dealer around. Apparently I’ve made all kinds of ‘special’ deals and exceptional pacts with quite a few people. My secretaries are consistently asking me, “What did you say to Mrs. So & So?, she says you said…..” & there you just fill in the blank with any one of a number of uncommon requests, favors or special services I apparently whole heartedly promised. Because, as the caller claims with unwavering confidence in their voice, “Jerry & I have a special deal worked out-he does it just for me.”
It’s Odd To Me
It’s odd to me that I get so many of these calls because as I said, I sell to no one. In fact, selling is promising and I learned long ago that at least in the bug business, promises get you into trouble almost every time. Actually, I’m really pretty cut and dry and have the same rhetoric with each and every client. Even my prices are the same as long as they don’t live in a huge mansion. Many times I can even see my clients eyes glaze over as I plainly state what I do. ( I guess that’s a clue?) Not in a robotic way mind you, but I, like most pros I’m sure, have all my service info tucked nice and tidy in a little part of my brain and it almost always comes out the same way to each and every customer. So why do some hear one thing, and some another?
Roaches? you can expect this- Fleas?, watch for this and do that? Every other month? That’s this much. Termite control? This is how we do it. And the list goes on.
Apparently I’ve Promised
The one we get the most of is “Jerry said, If I see ANY bugs he’d come out right away.” Other favorites would be–”Oh Jerry treats for fleas all the time, there’s no extra charge.” “Jerry said that if he had to, he’d spray my entire yard for free.” “Jerry and I go way back, I don’t need to wait to be put on the schedule.” “Jerry does my son’s house as a favor whenever we need it.” “Jerry gives me a stack of glue boards every time.” “Jerry said I could pay in thirds starting next month.” but MOST annoying are the claims that I’ve professed to be at the clients beckon call! Egads!! Jerry said, Jerry said, Jerry said,………….. and please, feel free to add to the list if this sounds familiar.
My all time favorite is, “Jerry just forgot to give me his cell phone # & I need it to give him a quick call.” (get that 5 times a week from sneaky salesman too 😉 Gotta love em! However, that my friend, is office rule #1. (besides not treating in personal closets) If you’re a customer and you have my cell #, well, let’s just say….THAT DOESN’T HAPPEN! I’ll even drive 10 miles out of my way to get to one of the few remaining phone booths in town just so your caller ID can’t record my #. Am I alone in this?
HA! What’s more, is that these folks are just so sure of what they heard me say and so confident they’ll even quote me. That somehow out of the 1000’s of clients I have–that for them, I’ve made a special exception to the rules. So, fully persuaded, they call and do their utmost to get by my guardians of the phones. It rarely works. Just as odd, when I do see this customer, the subject of my “said promise”, never comes up. Hmmmmmm.
But as happens every so often, my gals try to RE-explain on the phone the established set of company policies and procedures of said service or request but to no avail. So, against my will and usually at great inconvenience, I make the trek out to handle a wandering earwig, look at already dead roaches or sprits a tiny paper wasp nest on a fence 50 feet away from the house.
I guess I should be more upset about these kind of calls and demands. I mean I can guarantee you the words FREE SERVICE whenever you see a bug or I’ll keep you 100% bug free including dead ones from ever showing up never crossed my lips. But then as I’m driving away on to my next part of my 12 hour 6 days per week job I remember……… back to the time when I had nothing but time on my hands and no money coming in while bills went unpaid. Back when I prayed to God almighty please increase my business & I’ll never complain a bit. That’s when I get real thankful and appreciate the wonderful things that have come my way since-those are the times when I simply say, “A deals a deal.”