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Sales Blog - On Call

By Steven J. Schmidt (5/21/08)

The unfortunate part of sales is that the sale never stops, and it's almost as if you're a doctor on call at any hour of the night. OK, maybe not any hour of the night, but pretty close. Therefore, if you're in the wonderful world of business sales, and you get a phone call late at night, you're probably going to have to do some damage control.

One night I was watching TV with my dad and his phone kept ringing. My dad sells restaurant equipment, so even after he makes a sale, there might be technical issues. It's not that he's pushing lemons; but rather because my dad gives the customer the option to buy new and used equipment.

A pizzeria owner, who bought freezers, refrigerators and ovens from my dad, called him at 11:15 p.m. The owner said, "My walk-in case was turning on and off, and I don't want to turn it off because it won't be cold enough tomorrow morning to freeze the meat."

My dad replied, "Turn it off because if you leave it on throughout the night, you'll be risking some type of a hazard. Call Jake the repair guy at 8 a.m. sharp. He's the guy who fixes everyone's equipment. He's one of out best guys."

The owner then apologized, "I'm so sorry calling you this late but I didn't know what to do, and I'll never do that again." My dad responded, "Don't worry about it, and whatever you need, you can reach me at any time you need me."

This is part of the caring process of the sale, and a great example of it too. The salesperson, who previously sold equipment to the owner of the pizzeria, told him that if he ever had a problem he could give him a call. The owner was in a bind, as I described, and didn't know what to do, so he called his sales consultant.

This shows that the owner can trust the salesperson, and will be much more inclined to buy equipment from that same sales consultant again.

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