Deal Breaker

Author: Jacquelyn LaMar
Posted: Nov 18, 2010

I think it’s safe to say that it’s part of our job in marketing to be a good “people person.” At the office, I interact with a lot of different people on a daily basis, and I actually start to build relationships with some of these people (face-to-face and via the phone). I’ve come to realize that these relationships are extremely important...perhaps one of the most important components in our line of work.


I will admit, unfortunately there are times when I get confused about who is on the phone or who is stopping by (who doesn’t?), and I get quite embarrassed if I call someone by the wrong name... If I do have these minor memory lapses, however, I apologize wholeheartedly, and try my best not to make them again. The reason I take this to heart is because (ironically) it burns my buttons if someone says or spells my name incorrectly. We are in the service industry, and therefore supposed to work our tails off to make sure we know whom we are dealing with. This means remembering someone’s name, title, company, birthday, dog’s name, street address - ok, just kidding on the last few. The point is that although this is a very small part of business, these small things make a huge difference in whether or not someone decides to do business with you or not!

A couple of days ago, I received an email from a local vendor as a follow up from a previous conversation. Prior to this email, I met with the representative at least two or three times, and this person had also communicated with me over the phone multiple times. In addition, we exchanged several emails over the course of a month or so... Now it’s important to note here that my name was beautifully and clearly displayed in VI signature awesomeness at the bottom of each email. Okay, back to the email...the first thing I see when I open it is “Hello Kelsey”.

Pause. Sigh. Pause again. Think. Scratch head... Ok, unlike most of America, I never use this acronym, but OMG! Seriously...did this person who is inevitably trying to convince me to use their service really just type my name wrong? And we’re not just talking spelling; we are talking an entirely different name!

Sadly...because this person didn’t pay attention to detail, he/she may have just lost the deal... I know that some people are just “not good with names” (I’m one of them) - but come on! Getting someone’s name right is important during any business transaction, especially when one is just beginning.

So, word of advice - If you are trying to impress someone, trying to get someone’s business, trying to develop a strong working relationship, trying to ask for help, etc...please for the love of Pistol Pete get their name right...


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