sir, mr. or..........what kind of hello?

Discussion in 'Lawn Mowing' started by bobbygedd, Feb 13, 2004.

  1. bobbygedd

    bobbygedd LawnSite Fanatic
    from NJ
    Posts: 10,178

    ok, i'm asking alot of dumb questions. i am determined to cover every aspect of selling my product, down to the science of human behavior. so here is my question of the day: when meeting with a client for the first time, how do you address him? my standard greeting used to be, "sup dude, what you need?" but i'm thinking of changing that. let's just say the man's name is "john doe". would you knock on the door, extend your hand, and say, "hi john, i'm bob from meathead landscaping." or, would you address him as mister doe? " hi mr. doe, i'm bob from meathead landscaping." is there a difference in what u call him? meaning by his first name, or last? does it matter? keeping in mind i'm not a teenager, i'm probably about the same age, or a few years younger, as the clients i service.
     
  2. NCSULandscaper

    NCSULandscaper Banned
    Posts: 1,557

    Depending on the age of the client. If they are in the late 20's, 30's or early 40's i will call them by their first name, since none of them want to feel old. An older client i will call them sir or mam, just out of respect.
     
  3. Turfdude

    Turfdude LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,900

    I guess it depends on their age relationally to yours. If the prospective clients are elderly, I usually go w/ Hello Mr/Mrs so-n-so, until they ask me to refer to them by their firs name. If they're around my age +- 10 years, I will call them by first name a lot of the time. I save the yo dude wassup for friends only or other acquaintences I'm comfortable with.
     
  4. scott's turf

    scott's turf LawnSite Senior Member
    from NH
    Posts: 949

    I have always addressed the customer by their first name unless I only know one of the spouses first names and the other one answers the door or phone.
     
  5. JimLewis

    JimLewis LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 6,842

    I agree with what NCSU said except I'll add this;

    You'll often get a BIG clue from the client themself. Usually older people call me and introduce themselves as Mr. Snyder. Or Mrs. Smith. When they call on the phone and say it that way, I am pretty sure that's how they want to be addressed. Another way they do the same thing is this; Me, "Ok. Well, let me get some information from you then we'll arrange an estimate. First, what's your name?" Them, "Johnson." Now I can tell because she didn't give me any first name that she wants to be called Mrs. Johnson.

    On the other hand, if a customer, no matter what their age, calls and introduces himself as Skip Jones. I am going to address him as Skip. That's how he introduced himself and I have to assume that he wants me to call him that. Same with any other first name. If they tell me their first name, I assume they want me to call them by first name.

    I think you'll get most of your clues from your customers. Just listen for them.
     
  6. lawnman_scott

    lawnman_scott LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 7,547

    first name is what i use
     
  7. lawnwizards

    lawnwizards LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,434

    i always go with the mr. doe and let them decide if they want me to call them john... like "hi mr. doe i'm here to give you and estimate". mr doe," please call me john." i let them make the decisions on what they wanna be called. works for me.
     
  8. impactlandscaping

    impactlandscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,332

    Exactly..and what Bob said too, if you address the older clients by sir or maam, they may ask to be on a first name basis.It's better to start off on the right foot.You have to give respect to get it back in return..JMO
     
  9. rkbrown

    rkbrown LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 533

    I agree with lawnwizard. I will call them Mr. or mrs. and let them tell me "Oh, please call me John" or whatever.
     
  10. Tvov

    Tvov LawnSite Bronze Member
    from CT
    Posts: 1,157

    I always use Mr., Mrs., or Ms.

    When we are talking about personal "stuff" (how was your vacation? How are the kids?), I may use their first names.

    I always try to keep business on a business "level".
     

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