Oct 24, 2012

The blindfold and soundproof test

I recently started occasional sales of a product, and so have had communication with a series of strangers. In the course of this, I've observed some things...

The Caucasians tend to be warm and effusive. They thank their vendors repeatedly. "Thank you so much for doing this." "Thank you for fitting me in."

They compliment what they see. They appreciate art, and if they like what they see, tend to trust you and leave the details to you. It's lovely transacting this way, because you feel appreciated for your work.

Some are super friendly. I met a lovely lady who told me half her life story while we exchanged goods and money.

It's a little strange to me, because much of Asian communication (even an Asian whose primary language is English), especially where a business transaction is concerned, is direct. Being thanked so much for providing a service that I was paid for, was a little...disconcerting.. to me! I should be the one thanking them, no?

And then I had this client who, via email communication, went straight to the point. "Can you do it? How much?" She was polite and her English was just fine, her name was an English one, and didn't give away her ethnicity, but the difference was so stark, I said to Hubs, "I'll bet she's Asian, probably Chinese." And I was right.

She didn't compliment the goods, but she was very organised, an excellent paymaster and didn't need reminding about the terms of the contract. (The Caucasians were often forgetful about the dollars and cents and keeping details in mind.) She didn't thank me profusely but the compliment lay in her actions - she is now a repeat customer.

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