Diamond Certified Blog

Category Archives: Customer Service

Is there a “Right Way” to Give Feedback?

Delivering feedback isn’t always easy. Before deciding to speak up, you may wrestle with competing goals of personal and social responsibility versus a desire to avoid conflict. At some point, every service provider has needed constructive feedback to better serve their customers. In speaking to thousands of consumers over the years, I’ve found that some people prefer to silently move on and not use that company’s services again. In those cases, everyone loses. Armed with the following tips, you may feel empowered to turn an unsatisfactory situation around and experience increased goodwill and satisfaction.

Talk to management before posting on social media.

Bob had a puzzling exchange with an electrical technician who charged him to flip a breaker. Bob and the technician couldn’t reach an agreement. After paying his bill, Bob posted a lengthy narrative of his experience on Yelp. He also contacted Diamond Certified and the Better Business Bureau. Continue reading “Is there a “Right Way” to Give Feedback?” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumers, Customer Service | Tags: ,

Happy Customer Highlights

While we love receiving all kinds of feedback from consumers about Diamond Certified companies, we particularly love hearing the kudos! Here’s what some happy customers have to say about their recent experiences with Diamond Certified companies.

Consumers are saying great things about Atlas Landscapes. Photo: Atlas Landscapes (2017)

Linda emailed to tell us she’s been using the Diamond Certified Directory for years. She hired Atlas Landscapes last fall and says “…they were exceptional in every way and truly surpassed my expectations. The customer service and quality of work were what I thought I’d get and more.” Continue reading “Happy Customer Highlights” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumer News, Consumers, Customer Service | Tags: ,

How to Use the Diamond Certified Directory

The Diamond Certified Directory Report Page

The Diamond Certified Directory features report pages for top rated companies throughout the Greater Bay Area. Photo: American Ratings Corporation, 2017

Last month, we mailed the brand-new 2017 Diamond Certified Directory to more than 810,000 households throughout the San Francisco Bay Area (if you didn’t get your FREE copy, click here). Whether you already rely on the Diamond Certified Directory to find top rated local companies or you’ve never heard of it before, we figured it’s a good time to get (re)acquainted.

Every April, American Ratings Corporation publishes 10 versions of the Diamond Certified Directory, covering all of the Greater Bay Area (including Monterey). Continue reading “How to Use the Diamond Certified Directory” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumer News, Consumers, Customer Service, Diamond Certified News, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , ,

How To Choose a Contractor

Here are eight steps you can take to hire a reputable remodeling contractor:

1. Obtain multiple bids (if possible). Getting multiple bids is a great way to ensure you’re making an informed choice. If you sign a contract, you have exactly three days to rescind in writing. Upon rescission, the contractor must return your deposit. If your area has been declared a disaster area, the three-day Right of Rescission extends to seven days.

2. Check license information. By law, anyone who undertakes to improve your home or property must have a contractor’s license if the cost from start to completion will exceed $500. You can check contractors’ licenses at cslb.ca.gov. Continue reading “How To Choose a Contractor” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumer Events, Consumer News, Consumers, Customer Service, Diamond Certified News, Home improvement, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , ,

Giving Thanks

Practice gratitude, any time of the year. Photo: Clough Construction, 2016

Practice gratitude, any time of the year. Photo: Clough Construction, 2016

In the spirit of Thanksgiving, we’ve been thinking a lot about gratitude. So, we put the question to some of our Diamond Certified Experts: What are you thankful for? Here’s what they said:

sergiu-deac

Sergiu Deac, president of Best Construction: “I’m thankful for this country adopting me. I’m thankful for every day that I’m an American citizen. I can do what I like and I’m thankful for being healthy. I thank God for my family.” Continue reading “Giving Thanks” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumer News, Consumers, Customer Service, Diamond Certified Experts, Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

Five Steps for Negotiating a Speedy Partial Refund

Have you ever hired a service provider to perform a repair and found that while certain elements of the performance were acceptable, other elements weren’t performed correctly? Here are some tips for speaking with the manager/owner to request a partial refund.

1. Prepare your mind
Be rational when asking for a partial refund—it shows the other party that you’re realistic and makes an implicit promise that a speedy fix is within sight. Separate what you know to be true (the service contract, industry requirements) from what you believe to be true (your subjective assessment and intuition).

2. Temper your approach
Try to gradually escalate pressure in your tone, language and body language. In order to achieve this, you have to be deliberately relaxed in the beginning. Breathe and be cordial. State what your expectations were before work began and clearly explain where they fell short. Continue reading “Five Steps for Negotiating a Speedy Partial Refund” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Customer Service, Savvy Tips | Tags: , , ,

Visit us at the Sonoma County Fall Home Show!

Where
Sonoma County Fairgrounds

When
Friday, Sept. 18: 12pm – 7pm
Saturday, Sept. 19: 10am – 7pm
Sunday, Sept 20: 10am – 5pm

For more details, visit fall.sonomacountyhomeshow.com.

Brandi Brush, American Ratings Corporation

Visit our new event manager, Brandi Brush, at the Sonoma County Fall Home Show this weekend. Photo: American Ratings Corporation, 2015

This weekend, our new event manager, Brandi Brush, will join a few old hands at the Diamond Certified booth at the Sonoma County Fall Home Show. Please stop by and say hi!

Home and garden shows are terrific resources for anyone beginning, finishing or just dreaming about a home improvement project. With hundreds of exhibitors, they usually feature just about every kind of home improvement contractor you can imagine. Continue reading “Visit us at the Sonoma County Fall Home Show!” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumer Events, Consumers, Customer Service, Home improvement | Tags: , , , , , , ,

Have a Nice Day, Y’all!

chris-image-bon-appetitI was lucky enough to spend 10 days in Richmond, Virginia a few weeks ago for our son’s wedding. Everywhere we went, we encountered warm hospitality. For example, one morning in the hotel, as I left my room and walked toward the elevator, I heard the maid down the hall call out, “Have a nice day, y’all!” I turned around to see to whom she was speaking…and realized she was talking to me! I heard that phrase again and again during our stay.

People of all ages held open doors for each other and offered unsolicited help with directions. The waiters and bartenders spent extra time explaining local foods and menu recommendations. They seemed to enjoy and took pride in offering quality service and making a connection with customers. I don’t know when I’ve seen so many smiles all around town. Continue reading “Have a Nice Day, Y’all!” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumers, Customer Service | Tags: , , ,

Consumer Response to the 2015 Diamond Certified Directory

We’re so excited about the publication of our 2015 Diamond Certified Directory! (If you haven’t received your FREE copy in the mail yet, click here.) The 11 county-specific versions began arriving in Bay Area mailboxes last month, and the response has been great. “It arrived the same day that a tree fell in my yard,” writes Louisa K. in Albany. “I found a tree service professional who came out right away.” Calvin G. in Palo Alto keeps the Diamond Certified Digital Directory on his smartphone so he can always find a quality service provider, and Cassandra C. from San Francisco says, “I love the directory. I don’t trust anybody but Diamond Certified to work on my house.”

Tip Rated Local Businesses Continue reading “Consumer Response to the 2015 Diamond Certified Directory” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumer Events, Consumer News, Consumers, Customer Service, Diamond Certified Experts, Diamond Certified News | Tags: , , , , ,

Battling Water Conservation Fatigue

A good water-saving measure is to replace your lawn with drought-resistant plants, like these decorative artichokes recently installed by Reilly Designs, a Diamond Certified company.

A good water-saving measure is to replace your lawn with drought-resistant plants, like these decorative artichokes recently installed by Reilly Designs, a Diamond Certified company.

For more information on water conservation, visit our drought resource page here.

We’ve been encouraged to cut back on our water use for many months now, yet we’re still not conserving enough. So now the governor is ordering mandatory water use reductions with the specifics yet to be worked out by the individual water agencies.

Why have we been so slow to make changes in our water consumption habits? They say, “Replace your lawn with drought-resistant plants. Take shorter showers. Only do full loads of laundry. Get a rebate for a water-efficient toilet.” At some point, you wonder if we won’t change our behavior until our water bills skyrocket. The truth might be that most of us (myself included) are suffering from water conservation fatigue. Continue reading “Battling Water Conservation Fatigue” »

 Leave a comment

Posted in Consumers, Customer Service, Personal Stories | Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,