Unless you are booked solid, and the only locksmith in town, you need
the customer more than the customer needs you. Act accordingly. Proper
reply when you call back is 'Well, that depends. What kind of
combination lock are you needing help with?'
Well if this not a troll??????
How does a smart alecky, "Slightly snotty" reply do any good or help
What such an uncharitable and one might say, 'Unchristian' answer
might imply is the following.
"Well I'm a pretty superior sort of person An expert in my field.Your
question is poorly worded and incomplete. Not sure I can deal with
Yup; nothing better calculated to personally turn me off from doing
business with you. The question is a perfectly reasonable one. It
merely opens a conversation; leading to whether the locksmith is
mobile, does the locksmith travel to your location etc. etc. The
expression 'No such thing as a stupid question ......' comes to mind.
It also opens the possibility for the locksmith to do some coaching of
the potential customer, depending on the amount time available etc.
It is now a few years since we ceased operating a small business; but
still get phone calls (got one tonight in fact for potential business
next Dec 17th) often saying something along the lines of "We were so
pleased with your help and obliging service that we are calling again
for ................... Oh; sorry that you are no longer in
We were in that business from 1970 to 2004. Sometimes dealing with two
or more generations of the same family!
Maybe an appropriate reply would be "Thank you for your enquiry
of ...... Very happy to discuss your requirement and if it's within
our capability and resources and time available, maybe we can be of
That leaves door open to declining the work if it's not reasonable,
unprofitable etc. Also how on earth does one know how much business is
or is/not out there if callers get 'turned off' and don't call. Or
worse the locksmith doesn't call back! Or whenthey do have a 'snotty'
In another business previous to the one already mentioned (in the
1950s to 1960s) we established a reputation for service and fair
dealing in the tube TV repair business (Yes! Villainous TV repair!)
Such that many years later it was mentioned time and again when we
were elected twice, to local town councils and served our
municipality, without remuneration in that capacity for nearly ten
years. A very rewarding experience btw.
In most parts of the English speaking world there are expressions such
as; "What goes around, comes around". In other words 'Do unto others
as you would have them do unto you'. No wonder somebody needs to
"Learn more about Jesus"!
How much better to have someone say "Such an obliging person, that
locksmith; and once he got here he that lock fixed in jig time". The
message coming across as; he is good at what he does, he is obliging
therefore he's in demand and is busy. So we were lucky we called HIM
for our lock work.
Aw heck! (Won't say he**) Here endeth the lesson.
Just go and buy a new lock; forget calling a locksmith.
Look at the pool of people who are locksmiths. It's for people who are
otherwise unemployable and don't have many options.
If he's an especially ambitious locksmith, he may repair storm door
screens as a sideline.
The caller inquiring "Do you do combination locks?" was probably only a
maintenance supervisor from a large apartment complex who only wanted
a few hundred mailbox locks redone. Certainly you don't need that kind of
Make it as simple as possible, but no simpler.
Larry Wasserman - Baltimore Maryland - lwasserm(a)sdf. lonestar. org
On May 1, 8:22 am, firstname.lastname@example.orgNoOnSePsAtMar.org (Larry W) wrote:
Or he has a hotel on the ocean and is thinking of changing 300 locks,
and gives rooms and boat free to friends when they are avalaible. Once
I got a call about painting 1 lousy door, It turned out to be 130
doors, I restored brass hardware and sprayed them for a nice hotel,
the place kept me busy for years until they hired a full time live in
painter. If an add says "We do Locks", you do locks, and look for
commercial jobs where you can eat for years. There is nothing better
than big jobs where you get alot done.
In your head you reply with a simple "Yes". and wait for the next
In real life, you pick up the phone, call the customer & say "We do
lots of things to combinations locks, Mrs. Smith. what's your
Because, although the customer is not necessarily always right. . .
they are never, ever, wrong.
[and if you can't pull off the 'you're the bestest person in the whole
world, Mrs. smith' lie with conviction, then get out of retail. you're
only torturing yourself and the people you come in contact with]
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