Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I'm Manager Of A Criminal Carpet Store

Imagine this, it's hard to believe but true! Just three short years ago, I was railing against the fly-by-night carpet stores. And now I'm the senior manager of one! How great is that?

And I owe my terrific progress -- a promotion on the first day! -- to choosing a life of crime. Who said crime doesn't pay! Johnny, the boss of our little subset of the organization got a call from Mr. Big, who said he was watching my progress -- me! -- and apparently liked what he saw! Mr. Big just put in another fly-by-night carpet store and he thought I could handle it!

Today's my first day. And if everything goes true to pattern, I'll have a pretty good job for a week, since these stores always close down about that fast. But that's OK with me. If I do good, Mr. Big will probably put me in charge of something else. I just have to show I'm real good at cheating customers, paying no attention to their complaints, and keeping out of sight if they persist.

OK, I'm going to level with you. I don't think the guys know about this blog. The carpet sucks, sucks bad. Just as an example, the tuft will barely stay on a month. But we have this spray solution, called "Three Week Protector," that gums up the tuft at the roots to hold it secure temporarily. By the time it adheres to people's feet, or sticks to their dog's tongue, or just blows off from the breeze through an open door, the store will have long since closed and moved on.

The whole thing is win-win-win for the organization, since we not only sell the carpet, we make it and the Three Week Protector. I'm honestly not sure how you make carpet, but my past experience with carpet, with it lasting for years and being durable in the face of vacuum cleaners, tells me this ain't it. And yet, and this is a indisputable point, even if you don't make it right, it still looks terrific. The patterns are great, just like what the Persians do. I love the designs. I just can't breathe too heavily anywhere near it till the Protector is on.

Along with the carpet, sold to unwary twerps, we have a pretty good lifetime guarantee they can buy. It's very very cheap and sells itself. Think about it. If you can get a lifetime guarantee on something for 100 bucks, and you've bought $3,000 worth of carpet, that's a great deal. If you see even a single strand that doesn't look right, whether it's your fault or not, whether the kid spilled grape juice on it or not, you just call and we'll replace the entire carpet in your home free of charge, no questions asked. Shoot! You buy that much carpet and somebody's going to replace it no matter what, for a one time fee of $100, you have to take it! But there's a downside: The guarantee's no good. LOL, this time next week there'll be a pizza joint here!

As far as supplies, this is where you need great sales skills. Because there's an intrinsic contradiction. We want to load up the customer with various chemicals, brushes, and protective throw rugs. But our basic sales pitch goes beyond just keeping it clean. We really sell with the pitch, "Protect your carpet investment." And people nod and fall for it. The contradiction is, since most people go for the lifetime guarantee, what's there to protect about the investment? We're supposed to replace it for free, one strand out of place. The way I'm going to do it is sell the kit with all the maintenance items before I press them on the guarantee. Sell the carpet, get a handshake. Sell the kit, get a handshake. Sell the lifetime guarantee, get a handshake. And the sale is made!

I'm looking forward to the week ahead, or three days or whatever it is. The better I do, the higher I will go in the organization. Plus, I'll have the satisfaction of knowing my customers have put their hard-earned money into a product they'll easily outlive.

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