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Maggie Rants [and Raves]

Poorly Represented

by Maggie Franklin | April 1, 2015

I hate product reps.

OK. I don’t really “hate” the reps. I don’t like having regular reps from the companies I do business with making a habit of calling or coming around on a weekly basis to check up on me and ask if I “need anything.”

Because I don’t.

If I needed something, I would have called the company — possibly the rep personally, in cases where I have that option — and put in my order with instructions for the rep to bring it by on her next round.

Invariably what happens, when I have a rep, is that they can’t grasp that concept. They come by week after week to see if I “need anything.”

When they show up on my doorstep they either discover that I don’t work at 8:15 a.m., or that I’m busy with a client and can’t sit around and chitchat with them and look at pictures of their grandchildren while gossiping about other salons on their route, or that I don’t need anything.

Eventually they stop stopping by.

That means the next time I call a supply house and say, “Oh hey! I really need a new bottle of X,” or “a new jar of Y,” or “another box of Z,” the rep never seems to bring it by for me and I end up calling the place back to find out what happened to my order. Then I get told the rep never picked it up.

This is why it’s easiest for all of us if I just take it upon myself to take care of my supply needs. I will place an order when I need something or I will visit the supply shop personally to make my purchases.

In the meantime — no. If you haven’t heard from me, I don’t need anything. Sorry about your commission. That’s just the way it is. And if you keep popping in to gossip when I’m with a client, I am unlikely to want to support you in the future.

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