HOW DO YOU DO WHAT DO? by Joe Johnson
I’ve been asked several times the past few months, “How do you do what you do?” The answer is fairly straightforward. “Our in-home design appointments are very similar to your in-home new client assessments.”
First and foremost, ShelfGenie designers create unique solutions for our clients based on how they use their space. We are NOT salespeople trying to sell the most Glide-Outs possible. Our goal with each design consultation is to transform an area by providing more space, easier access and better organization.
After some “get to know you” small talk, a designer spends a minute or two talking about ShelfGenie. We then use a product sample to demonstrate the key features of our Glide-Outs. Next we show pictures of various options installed in previous clients’ homes. The picture tour usually demonstrates options that a client had not considered which immediately involves them in the design process.
With these preliminaries completed, a designer begins the assessment phase by opening cabinets and asking both the client and themselves questions such as, “Where do you food prep?” While asking this question we are looking at where the mixing bowls, measuring cups, etc., are stored. If the food prep utensils are spread throughout the kitchen, we suggest moving everything close to the food prep area and then propose a Glide-Out solution.
During the assessment stage we are also looking for a place to store trays, cutting boards and cookie sheets. Are pots and pans convenient to the stove? Where is Tupperware stored? Is it near the sink or fridge? Our solutions depend on the answers to these questions.
Another frequently asked question is, “Do you use everything currently stored in your cabinets?” As you know, the answer is usually no. We then identify the items that can be edited and propose a solution for the items that will remain in the space.
Many times a designer will advise a client not to install a Glide-Out in a particular cabinet because it’s not cost-effective to do so. We’re designing solutions NOT selling a product. Our honesty frequently catches clients off-guard but is definitely appreciated.
Each design appointment is different, but these are the types of questions designers discuss with each client so that together they can develop the best solution for how that client uses their space.
When the assessment is complete, the designer creates a simple drawing of the solution and then uses an Excel spreadsheet on their laptop to create a quote for the client. All of this is completed in-home. An average appointment lasts from 1.5 to 2.0 hours.
Overview of the ShelfGenie Process
- Design Consultation – Designer works with client to design a custom solution for their problem areas. Appointments usually last from 1.5 to 2.0 hours depending on how much there is to discuss. Designers bring laptops and develop a quote during the appointment. If a client decides to proceed, the next step is measuring.
- Field Measurement – Once the paperwork and deposit are processed, the installer has 48 hours to contact the client to schedule a field measurement. During the field measurement, actual factory cut measurements are gathered. Field measurement appointments generally last 20 – 25 minutes.
- Installation – 4 to 5 weeks after the field measurement, the installer receives and inspects the client’s order. He then schedules the actual installation with the client. 99% of our installations are completed in one day.
At ShelfGenie’s annual conference last month, ShelfGenie of Northern Virginia’s lead installer, Jim Burgess, was named ShelfGenie’s first ever “Installer of the Year”.