Sunday, May 24, 2009

Clean Purchase and Other Observations.

Yesterday we went shopping. We bought...financed...a washer and dryer. I guess you know you are an adult when buying an appliance makes you smile. I tried to get the salesman we spoke to Friday to throw in a plasma screen for free with purchase of a washer/dryer, but he would not do it. Guess I need to work on my pitches.

Yesterday, however, we were not blessed with a salesman with a great sense of humor...let alone brains. "I'm Tim, you are?" "Uh, alright Dora, let me type that in." No, it's CORA.

First, let me say something about appearance. I know how hard it is to drag yourself to work, especially one where you have to work with annoying customers all day, but can't you drag a comb through your hair first? PUH-LEASE!? Admittedly he did not have much hair remaining, and most of it was on the back half of his head, but that should make it faster to comb, right? And if he was going for the "distracted genius" look, it was not working for him. I think only famous physicists can handle that one.

Second: reading the customer and attending to their needs. If a customer comes in and says they are looking for something and have not settled on what to buy, that is when you, the friendly salesperson, can give them their options. Tell them about the range of products you carry. Give them options. When they know exactly what they want and say they have the MODEL NUMBER and SKU, well, let's not give them the whole opening spiel. Yes, it can be disconcerting to have a customer that knows what they want and who have gone to lengths to provide you with the easiest route to make a sale, but do not freak out. Please don't give them lectures. Don't explain the obvious, especially when your explanation was not requested. Don't make it harder than it has to be.

Third: When you see a washer with a round door and a dryer with a square door, DO NOT ASSUME the two are a pair. The customer just GAVE you the correct SKU numbers. Just because the internet application for your store says it is a pair, does not mean it is so. DO NOT try to convince the customer that squares AND circles go together. No, don't do it. Type in the other SKU and see what you find! OH! Wow. The computer was wrong. Hmmm, what's that saying? If you enter nonsense into a computer, it will spit nonsense right back out?

Fourth: When you see that the customer does not want your "help" don't give it to him anyway. I suppose I had already begun disliking the salesman by the time he had begun typing in the computer, which was maybe 30 seconds into our relationship. Cora could tell, but she knows me better than most. So when the guy asked about installation, I said no. He continued by trying to explain that with the new options it might be complicated. ( let me just say, that while I am not a genius, I can read instructions and often figure out things for myself. I even managed to do some minor surgery on our old washer/dryer set, so I think I can handle it) NO.

"You will need a new pigtail." Fine, I'll pick it up when the washer and dryer come in. "Well, you should buy it now so it shows on the receipt and PP&L (Electric Company) will know you are following their instructions and give you $100 back for buying an energy star appliance." FINE.

By now, I am really beginning to not like him. He asked what kind of dryer hose we have. "Rigid or soft? Because you really need rigid." I answer rigid. I have a rigid one, but even if I did not, I would have answered the same, just to shut him up...besides, I plan to buy a new one since the old one is probably not long enough to reach the new location, but I will buy that another time and hopefully from another person.

"How about the service/repair plan? Three year or five year?" What? Is it going to break in three years? The old ones waited until they were seven or eight years old before anything broke on them. Are you going to sell me a bad product? Do I NEED a service/repair plan? OK, by this time, I was getting more and more annoyed with this idiot. So, when he asked about the service/repair plan, I simply said no. Instead of taking no for an answer, he continues to walk beside me and tell me that 8 out of 9 customers who bought this appliance also bought the service/repair plan. I wanted to say, "then apparently 8 out of 9 people are idiots like you." (that isn't true, we have bought the service plans before, but he was very annoying.) DAMMIT MAN, go away!

We applied for their finance option. You could tell the girl who was in charge of that did not care for him, either. It was in the dismissive body language she used on him and no one else. He continued to explain the situation to her well after she seemed to understand what he needed. Finally, he went away to get the service/repair plan info to try to convince me to buy into it.

Cora, seeing my pain (and probably fearing my biting sarcasm was welling up and getting ready to rear its head to cut this moron down to size), took pity on me and let me go peruse the DVDs as a respite while he typed up an order for the washer and dryer. She alone bore his idiocy for a time. I salute you Cora! You deserve a medal of valor or something!

He would not give us the papers so we could go up and buy it at the cashier without him. No. He followed along. The whole "giving more information than needed" thing continued. I was at fault. I mentioned that we were planning to go to Africa. He began to try to explain to us he once had planned to go to Africa in 1980. He could not remember the name of the country, nor, apparently, the reason, but he tried anyway, looking, for all the world, like he was trying to follow the movement of an invisible insect with his eyes. Ah, so, this what the depths of Hell must be like.

Finally, it was our turn at the cashier. He then stood behind the cashier and basically told her how to do her job. Her expression was neutral, with a slight hint of loathing. If she had an aura, it was of hate and barely contained fury. She was courteous and friendly to us but barely so to him, minus the friendly. I don't remember her exact words, but they were kept to a minimum of syllables. Still, his "help" continued. Finally, it was done and he called me by my first name, not the first time, but fortunately the last, and wished us on our way.

We were out the door and walking to the truck. We looked behind us to make sure he wasn't following! WOW, what an annoying man.

We came home and ate lunch, then I commenced to gut the laundry room. I did it at leisurely pace, but it will be ready by Wednesday, when the washer and dryer are scheduled to show up. I work at the HS which gets out by 230pm each day, so I will be able to go pick them up and install then that evening with luck.

Other than that sales experience, it has been a nice relaxing weekend.


Cora said...

We were so lucky that we did our "Shopping" the day before I would have never bought from this man if I had to get anymore info than I did from him.

But I can't wait to have clean clothes and get the freezer out of the bedroom.

Isabella's Mommy and Daddy said...

Ok.. you are both way better then me...
I would have got really mad and told him what I thought..
And would have went somewhere else..
I am total customer service.. only because I have to do it day in and day out... so when I go somewhere they better be kissing my feet.. or massaging them..
Have a great day..
And I will kiss him to pieces.. he will LOVE his Auntie Kim..

Grandma Blog said...

And didn't your in-laws just have an equally frustration disgusting experience trying to buy a car. Those two salesmen must have gone to the same school.