How do you deal with gruff salespeople? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 10:04 AM Thread Starter
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How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

I just wondered how you folks deal with impolite, or impatient, sales/service staff [}:)]. Yesterday, I went to my local car service chain (part of a big group) to ask about ATF change prices. I get this gruff attitude quite often [:(!]. Do you ever show your displeasure about not being talked to politely, or stay thick-skinned and ignore it?

I know sales/service staff are humans too, and have off-days, but when one is a prospective customer, one expects respect from behind the counter. Or am I asking for too much? (One instance of angry/irritable staff is banging hard on the keyboard of their PCs when checking prices one is asking about, and it maddens me, I have to admit.)

What are your thoughts? Any anecdotes?

-- RS [B)]
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 10:11 AM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?


Very simple-politely ask to see his/her manager or boss.Done that soooo many times.If the boss is an arse,go up another level.Ultimately,vote with your feet.[|)]

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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 12:27 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

Deathrattle is right. Walk away. If they are smart, they will chase you out the door to bring you back. I train auto salespeople here in the States and I spend a great deal of my time making them aware of the importance of customer satisfaction. If you are happy, that means more future business for them. It is elementary but amazingly too often forgotten.
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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 12:54 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

Just walk.

It is not your job to explain to them why or help them get better. They need to learn that with the impact to their bottom line. If they ask why you are leaving, just say 'figure it out' and leave. Don't argue or lecture. Life is too short.

Now if you are a business consultant, pull out a contract and start making some money.[8D]

McBear,
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Being smart is knowing the difference, in a sticky situation between a well delivered anecdote and a well delivered antidote - bear.
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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 01:00 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

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mcbear300E - 12/14/2005 7:54 PM

Just walk.

It is not your job to explain to them why or help them get better. They need to learn that with the impact to their bottom line. If they ask why you are leaving, just say 'figure it out' and leave. Don't argue or lecture. Life is too short.

Now if you are a business consultant, pull out a contract and start making some money.[8D]
You don't always have any easy option to walk,for instance if you are tied to the only main dealer for miles.Moreover,most good managers or directors are keen to see their businesses prosper and not dragged down by some disinterested peeon.I say speak your
mind calmly and politely into the correct ear.

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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 02:56 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

Okay, first the anecdote...Many, many years ago when I was living in Phoenix, AZ, a girlfriend and I walked into a carpeting store during summer. We really only needed a remnant for a closet. I was wearing a baseball-style shirt with the logo and name of the ski area "Snowbird" on the front of it. It's worth noting that folks in the warmer climates refer to seasonal winter residents as "snowbirds" and it's usually not a friendly, joyful term.[;)]

This overweight, oily salesman approached us, didn't even offer his fat, sweaty paw and said -- rather loudly -- "Snowbirds! I didn't think you guys showed up until winter." He wasn't smiling when he said it and I still don't know if he was joking or being a jerk, but it surely seemed like the latter. I looked at my GF and then at him and answered at about the same volume, "Hmmm. We just moved here and bought a new 3,500 square foot house, but we like finer things and are going to upgrade all of the carpeting in the house. We had heard you had good prices, but your poor attitude just cost you that sale." It was fun trying to watch his bulk follow us out of the store while protesting that he really wanted our business; after all, when you're that fat you need all your breath just to waddle, so the talking thing is really not an option.[:D]

* * *

If you don't realistically have the option of taking your business elsewhere, then I definitely agree that it's appropriate to go up the chain as far as you need to. You may find out that the poor attitude pervades the entire place, in which case you really are stuck, but as competitive as the market is nowadays I'll bet you'd find some satisfaction at a higher level. (Of course, when there is no local competition, those kind of bad attitudes do seem more prevalent.)

Good luck and enjoy the ride,
Greg
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 03:57 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

i agree...it is the basic human mentality... since i dont own the business, i am here to put in my time and collect my paycheck... at times there is no use to complain about it to a supervisor..he/she is an employee also... it will matter only if you own the business...or the sale person really cares... these days it is difficult to find good help... but i still feel the majority of work force still enjoys and love their work and do cares for the customer...if i am in this situation, i walk away and go to other place and do speak to others of my experience with that store[:)]
vijay
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 07:44 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

Reach across the counter, grab them by the jugular and squeeze. Punch in mouth if needed.
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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-14-2005, 07:08 PM
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?

Obviously, there are many ways that you can take to deal with rude, surly and gruff salespeople. As a last resort, I will go straight to the manager. He/she is trained to pretend to be concerned with your problem. Rarely, is he. If you are about to don fatigues and an arsenal to get revenge then breathe deeply and write the c.e.o. a letter with cc. to the mgr.

But you are there to get something from the store and that doesn't include insults and to be treated as a second-class citized. So, what I usually do is to make direct eye contact and in a firm voice, I ask them if I did something to upset them that is causing them to be rude. Now, you can guess whether I really care as I have not done anything other than be there. A lot of folk shrink from being direct. Anyway, the blackguard will usually snap out of his self-induced coma and habit of rude behavior and realize that he now must explain his actions. If he doesn't and ignores you, ask again only this time quite a bit louder and if he responds with something such as "you don't have to shout" you then, say, apparently I do because you either didn't hear me the first time or you chose to ignore me so I thought I would speak louder to ensure that you really could hear me.

If he/she becomes combative with you for being direct when asking if you did something to upset him, simply say: " I really didn't come here to fight. I came here to give your company some money and in turn, I wanted such and such.

Now, by this time, he knows that he is not bullying a shrinking violet. No, sir! He is being directly challenged to explain his actions and in almost all cases, he will suddenly become deumure and will try to assuage your feelings and atone for his transgressions.

All of the above verbosity is to simply whack the s.o.b. upside the head with a two by four of words to get his attention and break the tape that he is playing in his head.

Your friend,

Joe

QUOTE]Rollingstone - 12/13/2005 11:04 AM

I just wondered how you folks deal with impolite, or impatient, sales/service staff [}:)]. Yesterday, I went to my local car service chain (part of a big group) to ask about ATF change prices. I get this gruff attitude quite often [:(!]. Do you ever show your displeasure about not being talked to politely, or stay thick-skinned and ignore it?

I know sales/service staff are humans too, and have off-days, but when one is a prospective customer, one expects respect from behind the counter. Or am I asking for too much? (One instance of angry/irritable staff is banging hard on the keyboard of their PCs when checking prices one is asking about, and it maddens me, I have to admit.)

What are your thoughts? Any anecdotes?

-- RS [B)][/QUOTE]
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 12-15-2005, 03:47 PM Thread Starter
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RE: How do you deal with gruff salespeople?


Thanks, folks, for the anecdotes and viewpoints on this. It's always good to hear others' experiences in dealing with the same problems. As they say, a problem shared is, oft, a problem halved!

I am really happy with this Benz forum, and wish everyone here Happy Holidays and Happy New Year '06!

Bye for now,
RS [:)]
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