Saturday, July 26, 2008

All in a day's work, I guess

I am "Finance Manager" for the company where I work. On Monday, I will have been there for 15 years. We have a locksmith shop with the biggest display of safes in NW Washington, we have fire sprinkler & life safety divisions, alarms & security including CCTV & access control and a contractor hardware division. - If it has to do with loss prevention, we can help. And it's got good people.

Several years ago, our locksmiths found a product that they liked using called Corrosion X. When they are repairing locks, a big problem is corrosion and lubrication. This stuff tackles that by spades and also works as a penetrant to loosen tightened screws, bolts, etc. In fact, the guys in the lockshop loved the stuff. So we called their main headquarters and wanted to know if we could buy it from them direct. Next thing I knew, we were set up as the West Coast distributor!

So where am I going with this? Our salesman, Steve, has set up that wonderful web site (click on Corrosion X above) plus he has gotten TrueValue Hardware stores as a national account. So, we get phone calls from all over the US wanting to know about the uses of our product and where they can buy it, etc.

As Finance Manager, I'm the "overflow" person on answering the phones - but having answered phones all my business life, if our phone rings more than three times, I'm going to get it. Here is the phone call I took yesterday:

Ring, Ring, Ring, Ring.

Me: Good afternoon, Security Solutions
Caller: Hello, I'd like to talk to Steve, I have some questions about your products.
Me: Oh, are you calling about Corrosion X?
Caller: Yes, I've had a bottle for a few years now, but I just ran out, and I want to find out if I should get the Corrosion X Heavy Duty or Corrosion X for guns.
Me: Let me get Steve for you.

So I beep Steve, but he's not in the office. Not to worry, I think I can help the caller, after all, I use Corrosion X on my spinning wheel (doesn't get gummy or sticky and it doesn't attract lint) so I go back to the caller.

Me: I'm sorry sir, but Steve is not in. Do you have any TrueValue Hardware stores in your area, maybe you could order it from them.
Caller: No maam, all we've got in our parts is a Walmart. (Did I mention, the caller said he was from Kentucky? He had the most charming drawl)

Me: Ok, well what are you using it for, maybe I can help.
Caller: Well, I need something to use to clean my two AK47 rifles.

At this point, I'm thinkin' that my level of expertise with CX products is probably not going to do it.

Me: All right, well, I tell you what sir, we have an affiliate who ships CX products all over the world - let me transfer you to them, I'm SURE they can help you.

I love the magic of telephones - I pushed my Flash button and transfered this very nice man and his AK47's over to our guy in Spokane who said they would be glad to help him. Ah, technology.

All in another day's work.


Tammy said...

Too funny! I love the whole conversation, especially when you felt confident in being able to help, since after all, you use it on your spinning wheel! :-) It's also pretty interesting to find out where fellow bloggers work and what they do, outside of the sheepie addiction.

Kathy said...

I love it! And having worked on the phones for NEBS, Inc. when they were a decent company, I understand your plight.

Have to say you should be shouting that stuff to all the spinners out there! I ran off with both the C-X and the gun stuff to use on my wheels (and guns).