Friday, March 22, 2013

Petty Sales Rep Musings

5 Things That Bother Me:

1. If you take up half an hour of my time at a trade show talking about how great bargain books are and lay out your truly impressive plans for including them in your store, then not place an order, then hand me your business card after writing on it "please send lists" and drawing an arrow pointing at your email address, you really should not say, after six months of never responding to any list or voice mail, that you are sick of my spamming you and want to know how you can make me stop. This is bully behavior. If you don't want me to send you lists, just tell me to stop. This is just little ol' me, by myself. No big company. Better yet, tell me to mail you blurbs with images. Just be decent.

2. When you call me from a phone number I do not have in my phone as belonging to you, repeatedly, and never leave a message, then finally, when I pick up, tell me that you have been trying to reach me and that I am impossible to get to, I can only ask, why can't you leave a message? There seems to be some magic left in the world, and it is associated with certain people and when they call me. I am inevitably either standing on a very long line at an airport and finally in the process of explaining to the person behind the counter that, no, I do not want to sign up for a credit card in order to save 10% on my next booking, or I am making the difficult turn from the Lincoln Tunnel exit onto 42nd Street, or maybe I'm on another call. I have learned from experience that when I call unknown numbers back, from calls which do not produce messages, I usually get an automated response telling me how I can collect my prize just for attending a time  share lecture in Orlando, or some such uselessness. Leave a message! Or email me! Most of the callers who do the daily anonymous call thing actually have my email address. Or you could even text me. I really am not THAT hard to get in touch with. Well, usually not.

3. If I send you a list on January 18th and you place an order from that list on March 4th, you can't complain about fill rate. Fill is bad enough for customers who order within 24 hours of having received their lists. You will only get a worse fill if you wait so long to order. Don't get me wrong, I am extremely grateful for your order, no matter when I receive it, but why not ask for an update if it's been six weeks since I sent you the list (though I must admit you will occasionally get great fill on such orders. More magic). 

4. If you beat me up on price and terms, don't be all shocked and incredulous when the title or skid you made an offer on sells out to another customer at the original ask. Welcome to capitalism.

5. Don't trash other booksellers or sales reps when speaking to me. I don't have a delete button in my brain and will forever remember that you trash people to other people in ways that can actually hurt their prospects of making a living. 

Sorry, just had to vent.

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