I said I'm not interested in buying a new vacuum cleaner.
She said there is no pressure to buy a new vacuum. They are in the area and want to let people know what they have to offer. They want to clean my carpet. There is no pressure to buy. Did I just say that there is no pressure to buy?
I thought, "A couple of months ago we were supposed to be praying about opportunities to give/receive hospitality. I know I am not buying a vacuum cleaner, but maybe I am supposed to offer hospitality to someone who sells them."
First a shout out to Kirby. The machine can clean carpets. It really can. I'm convinced that it probably is the very best vacuum cleaner on the planet.
I was under the assumption that someone would take a half hour and quickly clean my carpet and we would visit and get to know one another and I would offer some tea and friendship, and then everyone would be happy.
Instead, the woman who knocked on my door dropped of her son-in-law, who spent 2 1/2 hours demonstrating how filthy my carpet is with my old vacuum cleaner, how much cleaner the Kirby can get my carpet, how the Kirby can also shampoo my carpet without getting water all the way down into the pad and causing mold and mildew, how it is almost hospital grade as far as getting even the dust mites out of my mattress---yes, he had to vacuum my mattress so that he could demonstrate that too.
There was the 'use the old vacuum to go over one spot 100 times and then get more dirt out with the Kirby' trick.
There were a lot of questions and leading statements:
- When you bought your vacuum, you got it because it would get your carpet completely clean, didn't you? (actually, I thought it would do about what it does, which is clean enough for me, but not for a hospital)
- Did you know there was this much dirt in your carpet? (does anyone know how much dirt is in their carpet?)
- How often do you shampoo your carpet? (This question was designed to help the salesman compute how much money I would save if I didn't need to rent a carpet shampoo machine at about $75/cleaning....I have NEVER paid $75 to rent a machine, and I don't rent one nearly as often as the salesman was hoping)
- This machine retails at $3000, but think how much you will save because you won't have to replace carpets as often! (This one is rich. My carpet is still the same carpet that was here when we moved 20 years ago. When we get rid of it we will not put new carpet in because the wood underneath is beautiful.)
Chuck is a devout believer in NOT impulse buying, lucky for me.
Anyway, this is what I learned.
- Kirby is a very good vacuum cleaner, getting dirt out of carpet better than any other vacuum I've seen. If you have trouble with allergies, a Kirby might be worth it for you because it has a lifetime warranty. Not only that, but they encourage you to put the warranty in the name of one of your kids, and pass it down to them when you no longer need it, because it is that good. They have no worries about giving it a very very long warranty.
- $3000 is the beginning price which went down to $1200 pretty quickly after the demonstration was over.
- There is no place in a sales pitch for anyone to say that right now, if I have money to spend on my house, it would go for replacement windows, and that a new vacuum would come after the end of world hunger and the end of global warming in my list of priorities.
- There is definitely pressure to buy.
- That a really nice guy, who was vulnerable about his family and his relationships and his willingness to change in order to be a good husband and dad wasted 2 1/2 hours of his 14 hour workday to demonstrate a vacuum cleaner in summer in a hot house, trying to sell a vacuum cleaner to me...when I knew I would never buy one. I liked this man. I even liked his persistence, even when I hated it, because it was his job to sell a vacuum cleaner. He had to do his job, regardless of how little hope he was given. And if he is telling me his real story, he works 6 days a week so that his son can have a parent at home instead of going to a day care center. I could not do that job for a half day, let alone 6 days a week for 14 hour days.
That is not hospitality. I would have done better to offer them all cold sodas and send them on their way without a demonstration.