Has A Pen-chant For Stabbing Motions

| Right | December 12, 2015

(I’m a salesperson in the photography and IT industries. I like to ask questions to make sure I can recommend the right solution. It saves a lot of time for both me and the client and ensures that there are no nasty surprises later on. A man has asked me to provide some advice for a new computer & accessories for his wife.)

Customer: “Here’s a list of all the things my wife wants. Can you do all this?”

Me: “I’m sure we can help, sir. Let me look over the list and ask you a few questions to make sure I’ve covered everything”

(I review the list, which seems straight-forward, and ask a few questions to clarify the requirements. Things are progressing smoothly until we reach the installation part of the checklist.)

Customer: “So can you come out and set it all up?”

Me: “One of our technicians will be able to do that for you, sir, but please be aware that we charge $150/hour for this service.”

Customer: “I don’t care about the price, I just want to know if YOU can do it or not.”

Me: “Well, I personally can’t but one of our techs will definitely be able to provide that service.”

Customer: “What? I didn’t ask if YOU could do it.”

Me: “Sorry, I misunderstood what you meant, but yes, one of our techs can do the install.”

Customer: “I meant YOU as in the company, not YOU as an individual. You DO represent the company, don’t you?”

(During this conversation the client has been gesturing towards my face while holding a biro, emphasising his words with a stabbing motion. He is only standing 1m away from me so the pen is very close to my face.)

Me: “Sir, can you please stop pointing your pen at my face?”

Customer: “What? Don’t be silly. I’m NOT pointing it at you; I’m just talking!”

(He makes a stabbing motion at my face while saying this.)

Me: “Please stop stabbing your pen at me. I don’t like it.”

Customer: “What? Never mind, this is obviously too hard. Don’t worry about it. I’m going elsewhere!”

(I try to clear up the misunderstanding but he has gotten so worked up that he just storms off, muttering under his breath. Another customer, who is a regular, has seen and heard the whole exchange.)

Regular Customer: “I thought you were very polite! I was impressed that you were calm throughout that conversation.”

Me: “Thanks, [Regular Customer]. I appreciate that.”

Regular Customer: “What was his problem, exactly? Strange man.”

Me: “Who knows? Maybe he just doesn’t like being told not to do something.”

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