By: Bryan Morris
When I first started working at Blinds To Go, I didn’t think I was going to make it. The first day of work felt like the worst day of my life. I felt out of place and could not foresee myself ever being comfortable being on the sales floor and interacting with customers for 8+ hours. You see, I am on the quiet side of the personality spectrum. For some reason I thought because of this fact I would not be able to be a good salesperson (which as it would later turn out, couldn’t be further than the truth). One of the biggest things I came away with from working at Blinds To Go was a better understanding of the art of conversation.
I’ll be honest– I am not one for small talk. I am the type of person that likes to cut to the chase. After my first week my manager said one of the things I had to work on was being less business-like. My initial thought was, “Well this is a business; how else am I supposed to act?” I quickly learned that, while most people came into Blinds To Go with the intention to buy window treatments, customers didn’t want a black and white experience– they wanted to be wined and dined.
It was very difficult for me at first to incorporate small talk when working with customers. I am sure it seems easy enough for most people to do, but for me it wasn’t something that came naturally. Every time I worked with someone I had to be consciously aware of times I could add more to the conversation. I learned that such simple topics as the weather and plans for the weekend went a long way; most of the time customers would venture into other topics of discussion which made my job a lot easier. All I had to do was be a good listener, which is something I was already an expert at.
I would say three weeks into working at Blinds To Go I hit my stride– coming into work didn’t feel like receiving a death sentence. Not only was I talking to customers with ease, but I also found that I enjoyed talking to them as well. I developed a sort of swagger, if you will. I got into a rhythm when working with customers: the small talk, the attentive listening, and the closing of the sale became effortless. Don’t get me wrong; I didn’t make a sale with every person I worked with (wouldn’t that be great!), but I did have the mindset that every person that walked through the door was an opportunity to meet a new person and help them out.
Sales are all about the relationships you make and maintain. To my surprise I found that in the six short weeks I worked at the Carle Place store, there were customers that came in looking for me. I am not too big on sentimentality, but I do believe my fondest memories of working at Blinds To Go were when customers left delighted with their purchase.
I can honestly say I helped people attain a sense of home in their houses or apartments which is truly an amazing feeling.