When making a purchase on an item for the first time few people are able to make an educated decision. It is the responsibility of the sales staff to educate the consumer. Too often I arrive at a retail store only to find the employees have little knowledge of the products with very little desire to learn more. Many of these are what we call associates and are working for minimum wage. At times it can be frustrating trying to find anyone willing to help you. As a result many people will become unsatisfied customers that will never return to your establishment.
How can someone make a purchase and become a truly satisfied customer when the employees are either unable or unwilling to educate you on the products they are supposed to be selling. It is the responsibility of the business owners, sales manager, supervisors and the employees to make sure everyone on the sales staff is knowledgeable about the products and services they offer.
I worked for a business where the owner had a saying, “Dead wood is better than no wood.” What he meant by this is it’s better to have someone there with little knowledge or ambition than to have to do it himself. I must emphatically disagree. If the employee is unable or unwilling to do the job correctly I would find someone more capable or do it myself. This is the only way you can truly create a great sales team and be assured that you will have as few customer complaints as possible.
Recently my wife and daughter went shopping for school clothes at a local mall where they purchased a pair of sneakers from a name brand shoe store. I didn’t mind the expense, although it was expensive, what I did find unbearable was that when I took my daughter to visit her new school we had to walk a long way and after about two blocks she started to cry because her feet hurt. I bent down to check her shoes and found they were not the right fit. She had to take off the shoes and walk in her socks. I questioned my wife about the purchase and she said “I had a hard time finding someone to help us. Briana said the sneakers felt fine when she tried them on and walked around the store.” Had the sales staff helped and educated my wife and daughter on how to properly check the fit of shoes they would not have lost a customer.
What Briana liked was the style and she was excited to get some really cool looking shoes, an 11 year old child doesn’t think about fit and comfort. When I took the shoes back to exchange the store manager refused to exchange them. I asked why they sold my daughter shoes that were a full size to small he said, “Our measuring tool(Brannock Device) is not accurate.” With a higher price tag of a name brand store I am offended that my wife’s purchase and business would mean so little to them.
I recall going to purchase shoes when I was a child and the sales staff would first measure your feet and then select the proper size of the style you liked. When the sales person returned they would get down on one knee and place the shoe on your foot and have you stand while they checked the fit. Then they would request that you walked and tell them how it felt. An experienced and knowledgeable sales person knows that size and cut will vary depending on the manufacturer and that the fit of shoes is extremely important. mypopsox