Retailer & Installer: Working Partnership?
Flooring Retailer and Installer: Is It a Valued Working Partnership?
Partners are for dancing and the only ship that will never sail is a partnership. Installers who are looking for a partnership with a retailer, builder, designer or any other business entity are looking for love in all the wrong places.
As for respect, respect is something that begins within and is reflected or mirrored by those for whom we serve. We are not in this floorcovering business to be someone’s friend or substitute family member. We are here to do a job. We are trained, skilled, educated and knowledgeable about every aspect in the execution and delivery of our craft. Because we have respect for ourselves, we hold ourselves to a higher level of accountability than they will ever hold us. Because we are accountable for our actions we know what we will do and, even more important, we know what we will not do and never the line shall be crossed!
Because we have respect for ourselves, we also have respect for others. We respect their beliefs and values, even when they differ from our own. We respect their property. We realize that they have a choice with whom they share their flooring business. We genuinely appreciate they have placed their trust in us and we will not let them down.
Because we have respect for ourselves, our word is our bond and we live by it. Because we have respect for ourselves we realize that, of everyone on the planet, we especially are not perfect. The fact that we know we make mistakes keeps us ever vigilant to errors and when they occur, we acknowledge and accept full responsibility for them and immediately begin the process of remedy. We do all this not for the customer; we do this for ourselves, because we have respect for ourselves.
Having respect for ones self is not pride or arrogance. To the contrary, it is confidence under control and it is not something we get from others, it is a gift we provide to those whom we humbly serve. Personal respect is the cornerstone of excellent customer service.
As for other businesses, never, never ever should we seek a partnership or any other inter-dependent form of relationship. The parameters of a business to business relationship should always remain symbiotic. The moment the relationship ceases to be symbiotic is the moment the relationship should be terminated, lest we loose sight of the entire purpose and objective of being in business in the first place.
When we respect ourselves and present and carry ourselves to a higher level of accountability than others expect of us, we will have their respect and trust will easily follow.
It is repeatedly proven: like minds attract. People who have respect for themselves and their profession will and do attract those who value and appreciate these traits. When we respect ourselves we begin to understand this fact of reality. We are equally comfortable with the customers who value our professionalism as we are with those who do not. We know we do not live in a “one size fits all world;” that there are people out there who are evil, who are dishonest, who do not value professionalism and/or skilled craftsmanship and we are very comfortable with allowing them to take their business somewhere else. It is more a declaration of themselves than a condemnation of us, our value system or our beliefs.
This article was originally published March 2010. If you would like to discuss this article, you can start a new topic in our Articles Discussion Forum, or comment by using the form below.
David Hunt is a strong proponent of education in the floor covering industry. He is a renowned woven goods master in great demand. David and his wife own The Vermont Rug Company, teach and have offered guidance to all who seek to learn the trade. It is apparent to all who know him that his true love, beyond his wife and family, is for the flooring industry and his fellow flooring professionals. We here at TheFloorPro.com are proud to count David Hunt as one of our treasured members.