26 August 2009

Disrespectful Drivers Ruin Potential Business Clients?

I'm in a field where I always keep my eyes open for new vendors in the facilities operations division, ie: painters, HVAC techs, landscapers, glass repair, fire services, etc. I usually do this by going to the phone book, internet, or the super handy - "The Blue Book: Building and Construction", but most recently I catch myself trying to find a pen and paper to jot down a license number I see on a truck as I'm sitting in traffic, as I'm guessing that this is why they advertise on thier vehicles, right? I suppose you could say that I am a little picky when it comes to which numbers I write down, and I didn't recognize this until this morning. My routine for writing down these companies information usualy consists of:

  • Is the vehicle in good repair? If they care about thier own pieces of equipment they will more likely take care when they do a job for us at our properties. Now I understand that some work related vehicles will have paint on them if your a painter, or concrete/scratches if you are a concrete worker {I suppose those would be called masons?}, or dents if your carrying heavy equipment, all of these things I allow for. The things I'm talking about is if there is trash everywhere, if the company logo/sticker is peeling or in a bad condition. That is usually the first turn of from me when looking for companies.
  • Is there a CA state license number on the logo? This is important to us as we can't use anyone that isn't licensed or insured.
After I look at the condition of the vehicle and if it has the necessary information on it that I need to follow-up with the company and find out if they have the proper terms that we need to use them, I usually write down thier number.... well, until I realized I do something else. This morning I had down both of the items above and then it happened, they sped up and started weaving in and out of traffic like a mad man! I promptly stopped writing the number and blew them off as a company I would use. As I sit here and type this I can't think of why - the only thing I can come up with is if they are in a hurry on the road what would they do to a project they are working on if they are missing the deadline, would they recklessly hurry up to finish and not pay attention to the quality? Would they hurry through and make mistakes? Would they not do quality control and let the noticed mistakes go unfixed? Then I realized I really am not sure why I wouldn't use them - I do know however that if you are advertising your company it might be a wise decision to drive a little better than you would in your own car, as it could hurt your companys efforts to bring in new business, in my own opinion anyway, which is why I have a blog - to express my own opinion.

Do contractors think of these things when assigning drivers?! I understand that we all have deadlines and we all need to do things according to someone else's {boss, bills, life, children, spouse, parents, etc.} schedule but the best way to do them is to do it right the first time, no matter the time it takes and that is what builds the trust, not only meeting the deadline but meeting it with honesty and intergrity. So watch how you are driving because I am sure I'm not the only one out there in the world who gets information of possible new vendors off of the non-peeling/faded stickers on the side of business vehicles.

I think this applys to anyone for any type of business whether it be a daycare bus, to dry cleaning pick up, to which parcel delivery service you choose to go with, who delievers your milk, or your babies cloth diapers.

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