Every company in the moving industry wants you to believe it’s the best you’ll find anywhere in the local area. That’s understandable and to be expected. But, obviously, not all companies are created equal. And, more often than not, it’s the little things that separate good companies from mediocre ones, great companies from the merely good. But, if you want to know one small thing that a good company does that separates it from mediocre companies, it’s this:
When you’re moving your personal or business possessions, those things matter to you. You want them handled with care. You want them stacked a certain way. You want them wrapped a certain way. You want your move, large or small, to be handled a certain way. A company that doesn’t listen, that doesn’t take notes and ask questions, but insists that it knows better than you, is not a good moving company. You want a partner when you move – not a lecture. If they’re not engaged and interested in what you’re telling them, then that’s the biggest red flag that they’re going to get something wrong on moving day.
And it’s going to happen on your dime.
Listening is such a small thing, but good companies look after the small things. They write down your instructions – and in your presence. They ask questions about specific items. They make suggestions about how they think something should be moved, but also consider your feedback and concerns. They’ll take the time to repeat something you’ve told them so that they’re sure they have it right. And a good company that listens well will make sure that it will, as much as possible, have a foreman relaying your orders to workers while you’re present.
You’ll get to see in real time that everyone is absorbing your instructions and appreciative of where you are coming from.
A good moving company recognizes that communication is never a one-way street. It’s your money. They’re your possessions. It’s your business. Or your home. You’re a partner in all of this, not just another wallet or statistic. When you’re talking to a company representative and deciding whether or not to hire them for your big move, look for the little things that add up to big things. Do they look you in the eye? Do they bring a notepad and pen with them when they come to speak with you? The first time you meet, is it an experienced foreman who greets you to talk about the move – or do they send someone else? It’s not hard to see when a company is listening to you, cares about your business, and respects you as a customer.
Good companies always make sure that your voice is every bit as loud as theirs.
Good listening is more important than good pricing or a good sales pitch. When a moving company listens to you, a good one will start asking about what you want – and what matters to you – before it starts giving you pricing schemes or laying out its conditions. They’ll look for common ground. And, if they’re a conscientious company, they’ll keep asking questions until you’re both sure they have it right.
Don’t settle: if someone is not listening to you, that’s not only a sign of disrespect, that’s a sign of a poor company.
At the end of the day, listening is the one thing that a good company does before it does anything. When people listen, there are no misunderstandings. There is a reduced risk of conflict or acrimony. They know your position, and you know theirs. A company that listens is a company which is showing you that it wants a partnership. And when you have a partner in a moving project who listens, you have a person – or a company – that you can trust.
The better the listener, the better the company.
More than manners, more than nice uniforms, more than nice equipment, listening is the one thing that certifiably distinguishes the good from the average, the great from the good. If you ever have a problem deciding which company you should go with on a big move, take a moment and ask yourself how well they listened to you when you talked to them. That can literally tell you all you need to know about their attitudes towards customers and towards the work they do.
If they don’t have an ear for you, you shouldn’t have the time for them.