I am ALWAYS amazed at the stupidity and ignorance of some people in the business world. I am pretty much never without examples of this, as I'm sure you aren't, either.
Latest story. My incredibly beautiful wife, Kay, is a distributor for Send Out Cards. (Quick pitch – if you're not using these for marketing and relationship building, you're making a mistake!) And just like any good business person, she beats the bushes for prospects. When she does meet someone, she'll send a sample card and follow-up by email. At a Chamber of Commerce luncheon recently, she met Mr. Steve Garitone of Banner Bank and exchanged business cards.
Kay followed up by sending a personalized Send Out Card showing how it can be used in business. She followed a few days later with the following message:
Hope you’re having a great day. Or should I say a Banner Day!
I sent you a card awhile ago, using the Send Out Cards system. On the front was a picture of my hand holding your business card. Actually it wasn’t my hand, it’s just one of the frame options in SOC.
I was wondering if you’d like to make a card like this and see how the system works. It’s great for thank-you’s, follow-ups, and keeping in touch. I have had an amazing response to them!
Please let me know.
A week later, Kay received this exact response:
Yes I did get your card but currently am not interested in pursuing further I will keep your info
(This is copied exactly how it was sent. Apparently, Mr. Garitone's time is too precious to use punctuation and manners.)
As I said, this stuff amazes me and is an excellent example of somebody failing to realize he wears Two Hats.
Why was he at the Chamber luncheon if he wasn't interested in networking with other local business people? Oh wait, I know! It was so he could find customers for him! Apparently, it didn't work the other way around.
Why would he intentionally alienate a potential new customer? Oh wait, he apparently classified Kay as a non-prospect, not thinking that she was also involved in my business – a business with accounts and loans and credit lines and all that stuff banks are looking to sell.
Maybe Banner Bank is so successful they don't need new customers. Oh wait, they AREN'T. Like most banks they've lost a lot of money in the last few years and are still losing money, as they first quarter 2011 10-Q report shows.
None of this rant has to do with Mr. Garitone's disinterest in Send Out Cards. He's allowed to make that decision, as we all are in any purchasing decision. That's just business. But he's not allowed to purposely treat someone badly. At least not if I find out.
Look gang, it's never the lions and tigers that get you in the jungle. It's the mosquitos. It's the little daily, seemingly unimportant stuff that ends up biting us in the butt. And that includes showing respect and good manners for anybody you're talking or communicating with, no matter how unimportant or irrelevant you think that person is. And the fact is, if you think someone is unimportant and irrelevant, you are a jerk.
wow…a little harsh there Steve. Cut the guy some slack. a least he replied.
Steve – You are way off base. The Banner rep’s response was just fine. I think he may have used a feature on his phone that allows him to “speak” his response and the phone transcribes to the email. The transcription often misses punctuation. I think you need MORE rest. Your response is way out of proportion with issues you are calling attention to.
Mountain out of a mole-hill Steve! So what if the guy was a bit cold in his response. I find it more problematic that you aired what was a frustration for you and your wife on a public blog – without the courtesy of removing names.
Thanks for the regular articles. I have read with interest your last couple of blogs on cyber bullies and I must say, I agree with you wholeheartedly. I have operated my business for nine years now and I can’t tell you the number of emails I receive from people who do not even bother to address me correctly and who demand I give them information on my service providers, etc for free, without so much as a ‘please’, capital letter, a ‘best regards’ or even a punctuated sentence. Hey, we’re all busy but how long does it take to press a ‘shift’ key??
As an event planner my database of suppliers constitutes my intellectual property, which is part of the service I sell to my clients. However, when I respond and politely inform them of this on average, at least one in two of these people send me back an email which can only be described as vitriolic. The others never respond.
I also often receive absolutely no response to quotes I send to people. Despite meeting with them and spending a great deal of time discussing their needs and preparing the quote, I do not even receive so much as a “I have received your quote but no thanks”. This is despite asking these people during our meeting to let me know they have received my email and that it’s okay to say ‘no’ if my service is not for them!
I know that one of the downfalls of the written word is that it can be misinterpreted and although I feel I am very polite in my communications, it seems to make no difference. I have tried many approaches over the past nine years, but to no avail. Some people are just plain rude and nasty and seem to have a belief that businesses exist solely to give them their services for free. I never ceased to be amazed by this. I guess the upside is that it helps me weed out the people I wouldn’t want to do business with anyway..
Above my desk I have the quote by Robert Kennedy which is what I keep in mind when operating my business; “Do not fear the path of truth for the lack of people waking on it” Sink to the level of the cyber bullies? Never! keep up the great work, Steve!
A. I would rather have someone be curt with me then waste my valuable time, he did her a favor – she never needs to spend one more min. with him again.
B. The networking worked exactly as it should have, she met him, she pitched him – not interested – she should move on.