Good Third Party Vendors Are Like Drug Dealers (in a good way)

Yesterday I was in full crisis mode dealing with a production server that was not showing love to the users; I call that Wednesday.  Phone rings; number I’m not familiar with, and harmless according to the caller id.  I answer it and get a full press sales pitch from <REDACTED> barely after I can get “Hello this is Tim” out of my clenched jaws.  I inform this particular vendor that I’m not interested.

“What do you mean you’re not interested?  We do full server backup better than anyone else there is” ON THE FACE OF THE FUTHERMUCKING EARF! (Ok, I added that last part, but that was the attitude that was emitting from the phone’s handset.

“I mean that we’re not interested and I’m too busy right now to discuss this further.”

“Well, you really don’t seem to underst.” <click>

This is where I decided to terminate the conversation.  No, I take that back, I decided to end the conversation at the time I originally stated I wasn’t interested.  This salesman decided to avoid a graceful exit to the conversation and pushed the issue.  That is where I take offense.  Yes, I understand that it is this individual’s occupational purpose to sell a product, however I did not contact this person’s company for information, I did not have a badge scanned so that I could get a XXXXXXL t-shirt or a flying monkey.  I did not check a box on a website authorizing all vendors associated with a virtual conference I registered for to contact me.

Within 3 minutes of terminating the call I get an email from this individual.  The contents of the email, with identifying statements of the company or individual are below.  I could flame the guy, but one of us in this dialog had to have some class.

Hey Tim,

Ok – so you’re busy.

Check this out.  We do SQL backup and recovery better than anyone in the world.

Well, at least he’s consistent in his hyperbole.

Now, are all vendors to blame?  Hell no, neither are all salesmen.  There are some of you reading this saying “Hey, that guy is a great salesman!  He sticks with it and does what it takes to make the sale!”

However, you know what does it for me?

  • Product Features, Reliability, Power, Completeness
  • Technical strengths of the support and sales staff
  • Low pressure sales

Let me have a go at your product – full use trial period with access to your technical support staff so I can get answers while I evaluate your product.  Then just leave me alone and if I’m interested I’ll be back with my wallet open.  A good vendor is like a drug dealer.  Give me good product, get me hooked, and I’l be back for more.  Don’t run up to me yelling “Hey I got some really good sh** that will rock your world!”  (specially if I am hanging out with my kids on the playground in front of an orphanage full of recovering crack babies while I’m having a conversation with my boss and his wife who is a narcotic’s officer.  (Ok, so I can bring the hyperbole also.)

No, introduce me to a little bit of Intellisense and Refractoring and I’ll come back asking for some performance monitoring, backup, and compression.  It’s a win-win. 


Ed. Note #1:  Thank you Quest, SQL Sentry, and Red Gate for being awesome to work with.


Ed. Note #2: I did not spell check this post or check for completeness or readability.  I’m really stoned on some good Mexican Intellisense right now.