Rude salesman or realistic businessman?

I am currently trying to spend a lot of money on a new kitchen. A lot for me, that is – but not enough for some it would seem. I have fallen victim to some bad sales psychology and I was wondering what you think.

I was dealing with a very nice gentleman, who although he didn’t remember me the first couple of times we spoke, did ‘get’ the whole idea that I was on a budget. He did not make me feel silly for going into a high-end kitchen supplier with a modest budget. He gave me the idea that we could do business.

Step forward his mate – who I am afraid looked like an old school sales man – with a stripy shirt and a gut. After running through a few options with me he gave me a little speech about how they usually deal with  high-end expensive projects but because of the recession they are trying to be a bit more aggressive on price but that means that smaller projects like mine don’t really make them very much money.

So presumably I should be grateful he is giving me the time of day?

Should I tell him to stick it?

I don’t know what he thinks he told me – I am sure he would not recognise the message that I took away with me – but to me it was quite clear. You don’t really shape up because you’re not spending enough money.

Now I know a lot of you are astute business people and know the psychology of a good sale. Was this a rude salesman or realistic businessman? What do you think and how should I deal with it?

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7 responses to “Rude salesman or realistic businessman?

  1. An arrogant berk. Take your business elsewhere

  2. Hi Lucy,

    I don’t think he’s being rude, but I don’t think you need to feel grateful that he is giving you the time of day – it is his job! But if it were me, I would be thinking if the kitchen supplier is cutting costs, how is he achieving this?

    Perhaps he now feels he has done you a favour, so that you will feel more obliged to return the favour (by taking him up on his offer)…

  3. Hi Dan,
    I think you may be right – I think he does think he is doing me a favour by cutting into his margins – small kitchens need the same kind of additional tradesmen and fitting time as big ones apparently but instead of feeling obliged I feel cross.
    I am interested in the psychology of the sale because he obviously thinks he is being astute whereas as Chris quite rightly says, I think he is an arrogant berk!

  4. What he should be doing, in my view, is either sticking to his principles and sell his product with pride or, offer two or more distinct ranges for different budgets and selling each one with equal passion but, making it clear why each range is priced differently ( as said above).

    One of any businesses primary goals is to gain a customers business, retain it and, most importantly, have that customer act as an ambassador for that business by telling everyone they meet how wonderful they are. This man has failed at the first step.

  5. A rude salesman who perhaps should leave customer relations to his colleague.

  6. @Chris Which is one reason why I am so surprised, because if I had been asked to name one supplier in the region with a great reputation for quality and good customer service I would have said them.
    @Georgie Maybe I should add them to my fave old blog post “5 examples of bad customer service” – but then it would be 6 and the search traffic I get from that post would plummet!

  7. It may be a cliche but it still holds true: A sales reputation is only ever as good as the last sale

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