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Do You Or Don't You?

Do You Or Don’t You … Do You — or Don’t You — Fire Time-Consuming Customers?

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Brain Squad” members share their thoughts on stone inventory

[h2]Yes, I Do [/h2]

I am straightforward with them: “I am sorry; I can’t do business with you.” — Raimie Weber; George Fillmore Goldsmiths & Jewelers, Canton, CT

Some I have simply told, “I don’t think I can help you anymore, I hope you find someone that you can work with.” — Don Bullock; Bullock’s Jewelry, Roswell, NM

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Only after many visits to our store and we feel like we are for information only do we fire a customer. — Debbie Greene; Helm’s Jewelry, Columbia, TN

[blockquote class=grey]The correct answer would be, “Sometimes.” Or maybe even, “Every now and again.” Or the most accurate, “Not as often as we should.” — Rose Welch; Graham Jewelry, Lawton, OK[/blockquote]

I just say to them I don’t think that we are on the same page and that they should seek out another jeweler who will better understand them. — Aubrey M. McCormack; McCormack & Puryear Jewelers, Norfolk, VA

I begin, “Thank you for your past business, but it seems as though you constantly find fault with our workmanship which has passed my inspection. At this point, I think you would be better served by our competition.” — Denise Oros; Linnea Jewelers, La Grange, IL

The worst are the serial returners, who rarely keep anything. The paperwork alone makes the decision easy: gently tell them they are on a cash-only, no-return basis, and if that is not acceptable, don’t buy it. — Brian Hodson; Hodson Jewelry Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ

 

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[h2]No, I Don’t [/h2]

We have a code in our POS as GP, for “good potential”; NA, for “not applicable”; and PITA for “pain in the ….” — Michael Myers; Myers & Pugh Designer Jewelers, Newark, OH
I figure their friends know how difficult they are, and if we can please them we can please anyone. — Jim Ellis; Ellis Jewelers, Frankfort, IN

In our store we give everyone all the attention needed to close a sale even if that means attending to a time vampire. — Pete Argo; Kas & Argo Fine Jewelry Designs, Jefferson City, MO

[blockquote class=grey]In today’s economy you cannot get rid of any customer, because you truly never know if they will buy or not. — Charles Brushert; J.R. Brushert Jewelers, Wausau, WI[/blockquote]

We will do a turn-over to one of our other employees so they can learn patience with these types of people. — William Draeb; Draeb Jewelers, Sturgeon Bay, WI

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Every customer gets what time they need. If I just dismiss them, then I will be like every other bad business out there that could give a rat’s behind about certain people. — Craig C. Curtis; Downtown Jewelry & Engraving Shop, Belfast, ME

They are only time-consuming if I allow it. If they start rambling, I give them a few minutes, then say something like “Well, it’s been good seeing you again, but I need to get back to work.” — Peter Tims; White Mountain Jewelers, Show Low, AZ

We are clear up front that after a certain point we have to start charging an hourly rate. Since we do mostly custom, our customers usually understand. — Jennifer McFadden; Joel McFadden Designs, Red Bank, NJ

Other customers are taking note of the patience you exhibit (or lack thereof) and your tone. Use an annoying customer to show how intuitive and imaginative you can be. Word will spread, and that’s the best form of advertising, right? — Laura Pool; Laura’s Jewelry Designs, St. Robert, MO

I do have a loose set of guidelines: After three visits if a client doesn’t spend any money and just wastes my time or staff time, we ignore her very politely. Seems to work. — Terry Parresol; Parresol Jewelers, Lakeland, FL

If we have to get rid of the TCC (time-consuming customer), we make a phone call from a cell phone to the store phone and relieve the salesperson stuck with the TCC. — Varsenne Massoyan; Massoyan Jewelers, Old Tappan, NJ

Aggravating customers are just the cost of doing business. — John Turrentine; Thomas S. Fox Diamond Jewelers, Grand Rapids, MI  Do You — or Don’t You — Fire Time-Consuming Customers?

[span class=note]This story is from the December 2009 edition of INSTORE[/span]

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