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Day By Day© by Chris Muir.


Friday, April 28, 2006

making a business call

i called a vendor today, looking for a price quote on a couple of items. they were referred to me by a contractor that used to do stuff for us. since the contractor got out of the business we hired them for, i am now responsible. ok, so i called this supplier. after several attempts to communicate, due to either poor phone etiquette or connection, i was finally able to convey what i wanted to the lady that answered the phone. after getting my name, company, and location, before asking what the hell i called about, she asked "are you calling us because we are a woman owned company?"
now let's examine this at face value.
i am spending public money. i have the responsibility to spend it wisely, getting the best deal possible. it only makes sense. this company is the west coast distributor for the products i wanted.
would i call them simply because it was a female owned company? if all things were exactly equal, such as price, availability, service, and cost of shipping.... maybe, but i doubt it. when i call a company to order something, i could give a rat's ass whether they are minority, gender specific, religious/non-religious, or ethically challenged company.
can they provide the products or services at the lowest price, with the maximum of response/service? if so, why is any of the other junk important? woman owned. she sounded like it was my duty as a public employee to buy from her company regardless simply because of the gender of the owner.
if that is the primary consideration or requirement for public entities to base purchasing decisions on, how much extra does that cost the taxpayer, the ultimate source of the money?
damned social engineering. it smacks of unequal access and quotas to me.

so here's the deal. anyone have a good comeback to the question "are you calling because we are a female owned company?"
i can almost always think of a good one, but it's usually at least 5 minutes too late. i thought of a couple but they were really lame. any help? i'll store them away in the back of my miniscule memory bank for use at the appropriate time.


Blogger Lubber's Line said...

"Yes, but only for the receptacle end of all my connectors, I use a male owned company for all the plugs ends. "

4/29/06, 9:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Geezer, that is one interesting story. It sounds as if it is that company's way of determining which price schedule to use.

Some federal and state contractors are required to document a percentage of purchases through minority held businesses. The price for forced customers is going to be higher, I bet. For other customers an ordinary price schedule would be used. So the government, trying to do good and get fair prices ends up charging taxpayers even more.

4/29/06, 11:20 PM  
Blogger Redneck Nerdboy! said...

"Are you calling because we are a female owned company?"

No, but you're probably gonna put it down that I did anyway to get higher stats for the lobbyists, aren't you? Goodbye!

4/30/06, 1:10 PM  
Blogger Skippy-san said...

When I lived in Norfolk, I had a friend who had to retire from the Virgina State Patrol due to disability resulting from an injury during an arrest. He started his own painting business as well as some other things like selling Christmas trees. He created a shell company for all of these efforts that he put in his wife's name specifically because it qualified him for loans and grants because it was a "woman owned" company.

The only benefit to that I can see is that it makes the wife look rich when it comes time to get divorced.

5/1/06, 5:50 PM  

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