The making of a Missionary
TEXAS -- You know, there are many types of âmissionaryâsâ. We all think of the religious kind but I find many more âmissionaryâsâ in a different kind of âmission fieldâ. The term missionary indicates to most of us a DEEPLY held belief. I can assure you the religions of the world donât hold the market on DEEPLY held beliefs. I have met a lot of âmissionary salesmanâ in my life. These guys come across not only as a salesman representing a product; but rather as a person who represents THE product. You quickly get the impression this guy could not and WOULD not sell any other product! His zeal might turn you off, but he will make you think about something you probably wouldnât have if he hadnât come along. HE is a TRUE BELIEVER and it comes through when he speaks to you; âa missionaryâ.
Snap On Tools have made me a missionary. Unlike the guy I describe above, I have made it my MISSION to insure as many people as possible come to know that Snap-On WRONGED me. I am just a regular guy, you deal with guys like me all the time. He donât spend a lot and he might complain about prices but he pays his bills and aside from ribbing you about having the highest prices around he could be a friend. Not particularly smart, but no dummy either. Just your average customer. You might be asking yourself how in the world Snap-On could turn such a man into a MISSIONARY against them. Well here is the letter I sent Snap-On after the event:
I just wanted to write you a quick note to let you know how disappointed I am with you.
My Name is XXXXX XXXXXX and I am a maintenance man.
Less than one year ago I bought a âheavy dutyâ roll cart from XXX XXXXXXX (your dealer in the Texas area). A few weeks ago I noticed two of the castors were not sitting straight. I inspected and found that the frame on one end of the cart was bent. As I explained to XXX, I am not a âtypicalâ mechanic that you service. I am a maintenance man that services kitchen and refrigeration equipment in a large hotel and convention center. As a result I push this cart many miles a week. I knew last year when I bought (paid cash) the cart I needed a âHeavy Dutyâ cart. I looked at a number of roll carts and after talking with my brother who is a long time auto mechanic, I decided to pay the extra money and buy the one off the Snap On truck. It served me well for 9 months or so. When I did see damage to the frame I was sure XXX (Snap-On) would honor their long time claim to make it right.
I have just got off the phone with XXX and he told me Snap-On would not provide me a replacement part I needed. (I only wanted the damaged PART, there is nothing wrong with the box).
Let me just say, it goes without saying I will never buy a tool off XXX'S truck again. I am sure that will not send him into bankrupsy because I have only spent around $1000 in the last year. But I am calling my brother tonight (my brother on the other hand has tens of thousands of dollars worth of Snap-On tools) and will tell him the story and encourage him to BEWARE of the claims Snap-On makes regarding âmaking it rightâ if you do have a problem. As you might guess, I know quite a number of folks that use Snap-On tools (in fact my older brother teaches Shop at a High School). I will make EVERY effort to make sure I can inform as many people as possible of this sorry situation. I donât know how much it would have cost for Snap-On to replace the part and honor there word but I willing to bet it is going to cost them a GREAT deal more than the part would have. I am also a member of several forums on the internet and will make every effort to keep those folks informed as well.
Yall have a good day, I have had a bad one so far but there is always tomorrow
As you can see I was HOT when I wrote that note to Snap-On. Let me tell you how I got that way in a little more detail.
NUMBER ONE: I was lied to by my dealer!!
We have all been lied to and I donât have to tell you how that feels, but it all depends on WHO is lying to you and what kind of credibility they have in your mind as to how it effects you. When I bought this box I felt Snap-On was as HONEST of a company as I would ever likely deal with. I gave them MAXIMUM credibility. I recommended them to my friends, and that is the maximum credibility you can give to a company, person or organization.
NUMBER TWO: My Dealer did not âserviceâ my problem
From the beginning till the bitter end, my dealer never called ME one time. Each time I had to call HIM. He showed me in no uncertain terms he had no concern for my problem. He did not show me he was aggressively seeking a solution to my problem. A man much smarter than I will ever be told me something years ago that I have never forgot; âwhen our customers have a PROBLEM is our best opportunity to SHINEâ . If you are more attentive to the problem than you are to the sale, it will leave a impression that your product can not possibly deliver. If you sell the finest widget ever made and the product is PERFECT it still will not get the rave reviews of a person who has gone above and beyond the call of duty to service ME the customer. You only have my word on this but I will tell you that if I had felt my dealer had gone to bat for me in a aggressive way, I would not have been happy with the end result, but I would have still sported the dealer (bought off his truck). I would have lost some respect for Snap-On but I would have had even highr respect for MY dealer. As it stands now, there is NOTHING Snap-On or my dealer can do to regain my trust. I am now a problem you CAN NOT FIX. The opportunity to do the right thing has passed and for as long as I live I will speak ill of Snap-On. You see, I know the REAL reason Snap-On didnât just send me a part for my box. And you can bet I will tell the story to other âregular guysâ like me. Some will just srug it off but you can bet it will carry some weight with quite a few folks. You see, Snap-On is not the only one with a âreputationâ, I have one to. And to the degree my reputation is one of honesty will be the degree my story will impact others I tell.
I wrote this message in hopes that other Honest Snap-On dealers will read it and possibly learn from it. If you met me on the street you would think I was just your normal guy, You would never think I was a real live MISSIONARY (until I got to talking to you).