What a Myvi Car Salesman Taught Me Never To Do

If you’re Malaysian, you would know that the latest buzz in the car industry is the newly launched Perodua Myvi which seems to be going head to head with the (also) newly launched Proton Savvy. The thing about cars is that I never go to the car showroom when the cars are just launched – there are just too many people around and you never really get a good look at the cars, inside and out. So I preferred to let the buzz die down a bit and head on over to the car showroom and take my time giving the car a once-over.

Last Saturday seemed the perfect day. The sun wasn’t too bright or hot, and I just had a nice breakfast. Strolling over to the Perodua showroom to sneak a peek at the Myvi was just right. I saw a couple of Perodua sales people milling around outside the showroom and the Myvi was not inside. Outside the showroom, a sales man was parking a silver Myvi, in front of a lime green Myvi.

I walked over, and asked if I could take a look at the car. The guy glanced at me, and said rather officiously that the owner of the car was coming any minute to collect his car.

“How about another then?” I asked.

He pointed to the lime green Myvi, squeezed into a narrow parking lot. There was no way anyone could open the car doors and look inside. The sales man looked busy and never bothered to ask any more questions of his potential customer.

What he never bothered to think was this: how much was I worth as a customer to him if he only took the time to show me the car?

Why did he not ask me if I was interested in the Myvi? For if I asked him about the car, I was quite keen for him to start ‘selling’ the car’s good points to me. I would be receptive.

But he and the rest of his colleagues felt otherwise. That they milled around outside the showroom, not even coming over to shake the hands of their potential customers or show some sort of interest in people who might want to buy the Myvi says a lot about the quality of their sales training and how much they know about business and the art of selling.

Selling is never about the product. It is always about the relationship which you strike up that ends with a sale.

In the dense heads of these sales men, all they want is someone to jump up to them and say “Hey I want to buy your car” before they start getting their sales spiel out.

The next showroom which I stopped at had better sales people. The sales man treated me like I mattered, and took the time to show me the ins and outs of the car. Although he was pushy to an extent, I learnt more about the car, and could see for myself the pluses and minuses of this car.

So the lesson here is: treat people well because everyone is a customer, potential or otherwise. They matter. And you don’t know what one mistreated customer can do. He or she can tell her neighbours and friends about your company and what shoddy treatment he or she got. It may not be representative of your company but you do represent it and you stand for the company, in his or her eyes.

And yes, like me, I can blog and tell you all about it. But in all fairness I shall not disclose the location of these Myvi showrooms. The only thing I can say is that both are located in the Gelugor area of Penang.

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