Why I meet my tradespeople in person
Deciding what to write my blog about depends on many things. Most of my ideas are, of course, based on the services we provide and the people I meet. Sometimes however ideas pop up because of things I have been doing during the week.
This week I spent quite a lot of time meeting current and future scuseme recommended tradespeople. This is the part of my work that I love best. And perhaps because it is coming to the end of the year, and because of the conversations I had, I found myself reflecting on my business and how far I have come.
Happy 3rd birthday
So why was this week so busy with meetings? Well, Scuseme is coming up to another anniversary: three years in March 2019, and I’m really excited to announce that during the first quarter of 2019 scuseme will introduce a secure payment system covered by our guarantee. This means that you will be able to employ our tradespeople with peace of mind and pay them online though your scuseme account.
As you know, I have a relationship with all the tradespeople that are on the site. I have met with them all face-to-face and continue to build a relationship over time. Some I speak to on a very regular basic and others not so frequently, but without doubt they are all people I know, trust and like. This recent flurry of activity confirmed this. I don’t know about you, but if you use the same people over a period, you build relationships.
I met with Charles, one of our builders, on Thursday. He told me that in the past he has joined a couple of ‘recommendation websites’, but in all this time not one ever checked him out personally, yet they rated him highly. “They haven’t got a clue who I am or what I do. Provided I give them an annual fee I can display their logo.” Charles, said, “Only scuseme takes the time to meet me in person and get to know me and what I do and stay in touch.” That put a huge smile on my face.
In demand tradespeople are busy and, like anyone else, I must wait to get an appointment, but sometimes I visit on site, with customer permission. This is a great opportunity to get customer feedback first hand and to check out the work. Recently I met Roger, one of our decorators, at a home he was painting in Trumpington; and James, one of our builders, on a job he is doing in the centre of town. I was able to meet with Charlotte, the partner (and admin support) of another of our builders. These relationships are so important for scuseme, keeping the wheels oiled and turning.
When I speak to any of my tradespeople it’s always with a smile on my face. They have become familiar voices and we have mutual respect and understanding. We are all independent businesses in Cambridge who want to deliver a service to be proud off and get referrals, recommendations and endorsements. Cambridge is a small city and reputation matters so customer feedback is vital.
I give myself a pat on the back for our three year milestone as so many start-ups fail within the first year. However, this achievement is not only down to my hard work and determination, but is an endorsement of the excellent tradesmen and women who have bought into the scuseme community and deliver a great local service. In addition, my partner Nick is a major asset for the business and is a brilliant contributor and author.
Scuseme set out in 2015 to put people in touch with personally vetted tradespeople and home services in Cambridge. It’s doing that and does it well and now we’re growing, but one thing that will remain a constant is my relationship with our tradespeople.
By the way, whenever possible I meet in one of the lovely independent cafes in Cambridge.