There was probably a time when things were different. Perhaps if we could travel back to the days of the Neanderthal when hunger and fear drove man to complete a task, we could see a man with a mission. He had to confront dangers from the weather, predators, and disease. Life back then was cruel and short. If he didn’t react in time, it was all over. Fish had to be caught, animals trapped, fire started, clothes made. The simple of chores had to be done and done well. If not, the world would intercede and end one’s existence in a heartbeat. It was that simple; work, and then work some more or starve. In later years, as man formed groups, he had to rely on the women to trend the caves, care for the young, and fellow men to hunt and defend. That’s when it got complicated.
He couldn’t do everything alone anymore. But he needed to depend on other men and women to do their tasks. If any one of them failed, like to guard the cave, help kill the meal, or fend off attackers, then he and others would die. Life was based on a group effort that could be broken by a single weak link. Then, as civilization grew in scope and wisdom, more and more people began to specialize. Farmers, silversmiths, millers, and other tradesmen became the suppliers of goods and services. Now one could contract with someone else to get a job done or purchase an item that they might not have been able to create themselves.
The era of trade and commerce had begun. But, with that reliance came broken promises and poor quality. Not every craftsman was an expert. Apprentices might not have had the talent of the mentor. Anyone could call themselves a merchant, but many were just charlatans trying to make some easy money, at the expense of the ignorant. And these were the early Greeks, Romans, and later, the Europeans. Greed bred laziness and even these people understood the premise of enterprise and the rewards it could bring. Selling a faulty product had few consequences. There were no recourses, other than loosing future business or perhaps having to find a new town. But that was easy. You packed your burro and rode into the adjacent village to begin anew. So, what’s business like today, a thousand years later?
Well, does everything work as promised? Do tradesmen show up on time and complete their assigned projects as asked? Do we have swindlers, thieves, and dishonest businessmen intent on making a fast buck at the expense of the average homeowner? Have things really changed all that much? The problem is human nature. In my short history lesson, I’ve described a human that is relatively unchanged in attitude and desire over a millennia. They desire the good life, yet are unwilling to put out the effort that might be expected by a more discerning public. The trouble is that most of us are used to lousy service and so, when someone actually does what they say they are going to do, we are amazed and ecstatic. It’s if we have already decided that most work will be shoddy at best. I’m afraid our standards are way too low. But I’m as much to blame as anyone.
I should be far more demanding, but I’m not. A accept sub-par products and service. I don’t criticize as much as I should. I allow late and overdue work. I don’t question lame excuses and obvious lies. It’s pathetic, really. We have become a generation of apathetic people that aid those that perpetuate the issue by not insisting on at least basic service and acceptable products. And it’s time we took charge. I implore you to take my challenge.
Question everything. Return or refuse terrible goods or service, Do not pay for awful services and talk to the owners directly. Threaten, cajole, and make a stink about anything that doesn’t meet your expectations. If not, things will continue like this forever and our children will suffer the same fate as us. We owe it to them and ourselves to salvage a better life and raise the bar when it comes to quality. We deserve it and we can make a difference by taking a stand. You work hard for your money and you control how it’s spent. And if you have a bad experience, tell everyone you know about the company so they will be warned and that business will go under. We can do it as a collective group, because there’s strength in numbers. It begins right now and I thank you.
Jeff Hauser runs a website where you can find good doctors. He understands that not all doctors are good but he has hope that there are still really competent ones out there.
Currently, he is the Marketing Director for The Nurses Choice, LLC a Health Information and Doctor Referral site: http://www.thenurseschoice.com
Jeffrey Hauser was a sales consultant for the Bell System Yellow Pages for nearly 25 years. He graduated from Pratt Institute with a BFA in Advertising and has a Master's Degree in teaching. He had his own advertising agency in Scottsdale, Arizona and ran a consulting and design firm, ABC Advertising. He has authored 6 books and a novel, “Pursuit of the Phoenix. " His latest book is, “Inside the Yellow Pages" which can be seen at his website, http://www.poweradbook.com