Every once in a great while we get a customer who is upset, angry, disappointed and unable to be consoled or reasoned with. I just went through one of these this week. Thankfully it only happens only about once a year.
Every reasonable person understands that life has misunderstandings, mistakes, mis-communications and disappointments. Virtually all of us work through them with dialogue, negotiation and “give and take”.
There are a few others who think that threats, intimidation, insults, the “f” word, “pitching a fit” on the showroom floor and abusive personal attacks will get them what they want. It wont.
Having been through this just a few days ago, I decided to give whoever is reading an essence of what to do when you think you have a difference of opinion with a dealer. I am sure that the fella we had this week was a one in a million character but it got me thinking.
The way to go about it:
Start a conversation with the manager of the department you have a problem with.
Have all the facts about your case documented with dates and times and why you feel as you do, in writing is the best. Know the law. Go to the Attorney General’s web site for the State you are in for guidance.
Calmly explain your position to the manager without judging. Everyone is human. Listen and reason. Most good businesspeople want happy customers.
Know the next level to take your complaint to if the manager is unresponsive.
If you cannot get anywhere with the manager, escalate your complaint to the owner. If he or she is still unresponsive, at your disposal is the Better Business Bureau, Small Claims Court, Attorney General and Department of Motor Vehicles.
As a consumer you have a lot of avenues to get what you want. If you really think you have a serious issue use the various legal and manufacturer avenues that are available to you as I mentioned above. There is a way to do it and a way that only makes your case harder. A reasoned approach works the best and your behavior may help or hurt your cause.