Why be normal?
We don’t get many negative reviews, but if you try hard to enough to do the right thing you’re bound to get someone who doesn’t like it. So I’d like to share a negative review we’ve received.
But first, to understand WHY I’m sharing it, please watch the first minute of the video below. Then you can see what happened below…
CEO Agent Dominator
Donna signed up with us. A year later she canceled and wanted her money back per our guarantee. Unfortunately, when we reviewed her account she did not qualify. It wasn’t that she missed something “small” … she simply did nothing that qualified her.
We had to reject her request. But we offered an easy way to appeal it with a third party in case we erred in judgment. She didn’t like that. She started to threaten to “flame” us online by writing a negative post.
We share this so you can see the heart in which we try to operate with clients. It’s easy to put on a good face when trying to sell someone. But the real test of the character of an organization is found in how they handle difficult situations. And especially situations dealing with a refund — do they try to bully the client into submission, reject a refund based on inconsequential “details” … or do they attempt to do what’s right and bend over backwards to ensure they do the right thing?
After all, the character of the organization you deal with will determine, in large degree, if you made a right decision in choosing to work with them or not.
Below is our communication in a best-effort attempt to do what’s right … even in the midst of her constant, fiery threats to flame us online and hurt our business.
If you have not watched the short overview video above, please do so FIRST. It gives additional insights that bring some of these details into greater perspective.
The communications below have been slightly edited for brevity, clarity and privacy reasons.
1. Our Letter Rejecting Donna’s Request
…You had requested a refund of your money per our money back guarantee. …
Unfortunately, after reviewing your account we do not believe you qualify for the guarantee. However, in the event we erred we have a simple appeal process to protect you. Our goal is to be fair with all clients, and we will not consider the matter “closed” until you have had a chance to appeal it if desired.
At a high level, the most important part of our guarantee is your participation with your personal contacts. When agents are personally involved with their contacts, sales happen; if they are not, sales can fail. Below is how this personal involvement is stated in the guarantee:
[her guarantee required her to be in periodic touch with her personal database, and report to use twice a year on how those touches were going]
Conclusion: We saw no reports in your account indicating you personally touched your contacts.
Easy Appeal Process
Since your request deals with a refund refund we are sensitive to not err in our decision. For this reason, if you feel we have erred, please let us know and provide any facts we may have overlooked so we can reconsider.
Also, if after reconsideration we come to the same conclusion and you are still not in agreement with us, we have a second appeal process to protect you. This is the dispute resolution process built into our contract that allows you to bring the issue before an arbitrator to make a final, unbiased decision. Because of our sensitivity to serve you and be as fair as possible, if you choose to appeal through arbitration we will voluntarily waive our rights to require the arbitration to be held in person in Birmingham, AL as the contract requires. Instead, we will agree to allow you to have the decision arbitrated by conference call and email to make it as easy as possible appeal and ensure a fair decision is rendered.
If you believe we have erred please let us know and provide any additional supporting information for us to review – specifically, please forward any email reports you may have sent us originally on your personal touches that we did not find. If you agree with our decision and we don’t hear back from you, we wish you all the very best in the future.
2. Our Email After An Intense Phone Call With Donna
— this is our voluntary attempt to “bend the rules” to see if opportunity exists for even a partial refund —
Even though the call we just had did not have the outcome either of us desired, we are willing to consider the possibility of a “compromise” of some sort. We can make no promises of what that compromise might be because we have no data yet that we need to assess.
As we shared on the call, the two things we can’t control are the number of transactions occurring within a list nor the relationship you have with the people on your list.
However, if you are willing to help with the data we need for a potential compromise, here’s what we need to work towards a win-win if one exists.
1. out of your list of 100 people, how many listed and/or sold their home during the time of your service with us [note for clarity: for us to guarantee her results, the contract required more than 3% of her contacts to have at least listed their home during the time of our service for the obvious reason we can only guarantee sales if sales exist.]
2. even though you did not report to use any personal touches, how many of the 100 people did you personally touch….
3. Our Response After Donna Gave Us More Information
Thanks for responding with these details… As we look at your data, it shows only one person sold their home. With only 100 people on your list, that is a 1% turnover rate. For us to even consider a compromise of sorts in this situation, the turnover rate would have to be closer to or exceeding what was agreed upon for our guarantee.
However, with only a 1% turnover rate it is impossible for us to make any compromise since it is well below the minimum required for our guarantee. We cannot guarantee sales where none exist.