It seems like a million years ago when people took pride in their work. In recent years I find that the quality of workmanship has taken a nose dive. People do jobs and do them fast so they can move on to the next job because they are motivated by money. But wait, was the job done correctly? Was the customer happy? Did it have to be totally re-done at no charge?
Several recent examples that I have experienced are:
. We ordered new countertops for our kitchen. The salesperson at the specialty store went to our home, took measurements and told us the installer would contact us. The installer contacted us to go over the measurements the other man had just taken. He also told us he would come out himself the morning of the day of installation, re-measure, cut and install. He did all that. When he left and I had time to clean off the glue residue and other ‘dirt’ from the countertop we noticed that the island countertop had gauges and scratches in it. As it was late in the day we notified the company the next morning. I was told someone would come out to look at it. A few days later the installer came out, saw the gauges and scratches and said we would get a new one but it had to be ordered. It took an additional week but we did not the replacement and it was perfect. There was a problem, the problem was fixed and we are happy. But, the damaged countertop should not have been installed in the first place. The glue and dirt should have been cleaned off the countertop by the installer before he left. Double the work for everyone. The countertop people made money I am sure, but the replacement had to cut into their profits a little.
. We bought a ceiling light/vent/heat unit to replace one that no longer worked. We were told, yes, just take out the old one and slip this one in, hook up the wires and you are good to go. We got the unit home and unpacked and we were not so good to go. It was a unit that you install during construction not into a pre-existing finished room. My husband called the store and they said, well go up in your attic and do it that way. If the bathroom was on the second floor that might work, but that’s not the case. So again we have to take it back to the store, get a credit and then go somewhere else to try and find the right unit.
. We went to a lighting store to buy a ceiling fan because the big home improvement stores did not have what we wanted. We ordered the fan blades, the motor and the remote. We have a 7 foot drop from the ceiling to the fan so we need a 7 foot pole. They only sell 3, 4 and 6 foot sections. We ordered a 3 and a 4 foot section and a coupler to connect them. We got a call a few days ago the fan was in. We went to pick it up assuming it was all there. When we paid, the girl said oh, the coupler is missing so you can’t install the fan. The part is backordered. Now we are waiting for a 50 cent part before we can install the fan.
. We have black/stainless appliances. We went to buy a microwave from the same local appliance store where we bought the fridge and stove. We even had the same sales person. We looked at a stainless/black microwave and bought it. Got it home and had a friend come over to help install it and bingo, it was all black, no stainless on it at all. We had to box it back up and return it and get the correct one. The excuse was, “I read the numbers wrong” but there was no apology.
Maybe there are reasons some stores are going out of business, other than the poor economy. I do not plan to frequent the above stores again. I am sure if they treat all their customers like that they will eventually run out of people who have the patience to deal with them. The countertop installer has been doing the job for 26 years. Don’t you think he should be able to do it correctly by now? The girl who said the heat/light/fan should work for us, I guess that’s why she is a sales person and doesn’t build houses.
I would bet everyone who reads this has had similar experiences. It is frustrating to say the least. You spend your hard earned money and you expect things to be right. All I can say is – do the job right the first time, and take pride in what you do. That pertains to installing counter tops, painting a house, baking a cake, or anything else you are getting paid for. Do it right, better yet – do it right the first time.