Guiding our customers.

Someone stopped by my office to deliver my new printer.

I am upgrading from a standard home and small office printer to something that can handle the next level-up in volume. When I began researching this level of printer, I discovered that I could not get it quite so easily as a more standard model. In other words, they are not sold locally. However, I found a company in town that is a dealer for Sharp printers. Apparently Sharp printers are just available through dealers – not your standard office store or online.

I chose this option in large part because the local dealer has staff trained to fix the printer if there is a problem. It is a significant investment, and I am hoping that it will last a long time – and that we can replace parts as needed before it actually needs to be replaced.

So, here is this employee delivering my printer. He set it down where I asked him to. Then wondered aloud if it was wireless. “Well I sure hope so” I said.

He called the person who sold me the printer to ask if it was a wireless printer. He was on speaker phone and said “no. That is an option but she didn’t ask for it.”

I learned later that ‘wireless’ meant that the printer could connect to WiFi on its own. Because mine was not wireless, it means that it must be plugged into the router. Once plugged in, it can connect to a computer wirelessly.

The problem for my set up: The router was in a different room from where I wanted the printer to be, and running a wire between the two would put a wire right in the middle of everything. In other words, guests would have to step over it multiple times. That wasn’t going to happen.

So, I will have to keep the printer elsewhere. I don’t think it will be a huge deal.

Initially, I started to feel dumb. “I didn’t ask for this feature, and I should of. Come on Liz, why didn’t you think to ask for it?”

Then I realized: I went through the dealer for a reason. If I had ordered on my own and had options to add features, I would have made an educated decision. But here, I was relying on someone else. My printer at home connects to the internet, why wouldn’t a new, fancy, upgraded printer due the same? I never knew that printers could connect to a router!

As business owners or service providers in an area of expertise, it is our job to get to know the customer to assist them in their decision making. It is why I spend time with clients before just giving them documents. It is not for them to come in and say “I want a will” or “I want a trust” or “I want a community property agreement”. It is my job to learn about their family and financial situation, and then to tell them about different options that might assist.

If you provide a service, how can you ensure this is happening? It certainly isn’t always straightforward. There may be tools that would benefit some clients that I miss, but hopefully, by building a relationship over time, we will get there.

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