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Old 22nd March 2016, 20:49   #46
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

A dealership in the US was offering a group buying discount on new vehicles and a person who was familiar with it helped folks in his company get new vehicles in place of old ones. He was transparent about it to folks but also spent the entire saturday or sunday at the dealership with the folks and ensured they knew what they were getting. In such cases i believe it was ok.

But this commission thing is something i cannot do as i believe friendship is more important than some petty cash. You will be blamed for any minor or major thing which may or will happen to their vehicle even for regular maintenance.

One example: My friend was looking for a used car and she found one with good history and an indian seller. We did a test drive of it and i said things look good. After like two years my friend sent a picture of this car having been an auctioned vehicle and having a known engine condition. This made me feel guilty though we would never have figured it out. Be very transparent or else you will be left with a bitter taste.

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Old 23rd March 2016, 00:25   #47
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

Agree with what Maddy just mentioned in the previous post. I used to be a big Apple fanboy in college [it feels overpriced to me now] and helped many of my friends switch over from Windows to Mac OS X and from Blackberry to iOS. Sadly, each platform has it's own limitations and I still get to 'hear' from them whenever their products do not function as per their needs. Of course it's not my fault that a broken MacBook Pro costs 30K up to repair but then such considerations are not made at the time of purchase when the allure of consumption is releasing shots of dopamine into the brain. Many of my friends used to joke and call me an Apple Genius and I also made a rapport with a certain Apple dealership which offered me discounts, free iPhone covers etc but today I also get to hear 'cause you told me to buy this'. I don't have a problem with friends complaining when things don't go according to plan but a car is a big investment and a business advantage for you would put you in a bad position with a friend, relative or colleague.

Last edited by RocketRaccoon : 23rd March 2016 at 00:42.
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Old 23rd March 2016, 11:15   #48
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

Over the years, I've helped over 20+ friends and relatives finalize and purchase the right car based on their needs and budget. Itís been across brands, from Maruti to Mercedes. Sometimes, have even accompanied them for test drives and final negotiations! But, never have I expected anything in return. My love for cards and the satisfaction I derive from being able to help have been the only driving force!

However, one day I did receive a box of Ferro Roches with a Thank you card by courier. It was from my local Honda Dealer, from whom a friend had apparently purchased a Honda Jazz based on my recommendation and mentioned the same during purchase. A nice little goodwill gesture from the dealer
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Old 23rd March 2016, 11:36   #49
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

Any day the good will on both dealer side and your friends will outweigh the monetary or material benefits you may have for enabling a transaction. If the product turns out to be a lemon then you can imagine the strain it may bring.
Stay neutral and let the buyer make a judicious inputs from all possible sources before making the final call.
I get hesitant to visit a doctor where i always find a medical rep waiting at the lobby and gets preferential slot over a waiting patient. I have nothing against medical reps or doctors who entertain them at their office but I have my questions on the fairness of prescriptions suggested. Hope I made my point clear.
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Old 23rd March 2016, 12:43   #50
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

I guess like the most of us here, we get asked a lot of questions. What car to buy, what computer/laptop to buy, what is better nikon or canon. etc...

I used to give advice for most of these things right from college days, and most of the uncles and aunties have taken them. Soon, you get called stating that the computer is not working, the fonts are too big, the printer is not printing borders on word documents, and what not. I have even been blamed on making a recommendation and costing money on an unreliable product. (Well, lightning and old 56k modems don't go together).

Another example, a friend asked if he should go in for a canon or a nikon, and that he wants to shoot all kinds of stuff right from landscape to portrait and night photography. I know he is not a photography enthusiast. I recommended a good point and shoot like panasonic lumix. Then he gave a vibe which felt like - 'why are you recommending an inferior product to me?' and I did not feel like giving anymore advices to him. Since the last 3 years, he uses a DSLR with the basic kit lens on automode, and still asks me advice on why the photo is not coming out correctly. I just smile.

So, these days, I have devised a new way of giving advice. When a friend asks for a recommendation, I provide him with some relevant reading material, like link to a forum or a thread, etc. Once done, I ask him his opinion of the product. Only once he can conclusively say a few things on it, would I add my point to it. Else, i do not provide any more advice. I clearly state the following - a) pros b) cons c) warranty and service d)other products / alternatives e) running cost f) upgrade options g) and the best deal that I was able to find.

I ask then ask him to think about it for a week and ask him to personally find a better deal. The onus of choosing the product and the variant and where to pick it up lies with him. I would also stress to him that there would be other that may disagree with the choice that he has selected, so to go out and reach out to others to get their point of view and then assess those as well. This also brings up very lively discussions within the office group and different point of views. This is the way that I am doing things currently.

Things get a little tricky with my relatives, as I cannot ask them to go read about it on a link. So, I politely tell them about my opinion and then add - 'this what I think, i am not really sure about it'. So an uncertainty is maintained. This is intentional as I do not want them to fall back and blame me if things go incorrectly. (They tend to remember about things that did not work, rather than things that are working correctly) . So even when I see them using a product that I would not touch with a bargepole and explain to me how very good it is, I smile and say, if it makes you happy, then the product is worth for you and has done its job. I never say anything bad about a product once a person has purchased it, or tell that person on how he could have got a better deal online. (Why make someone feel bad, sometimes, ignorance is bliss).

When it comes to used cars, my only statement is - "Do not ask me, I am not responsible for anything, buy a new car if you can afford it." Again, If the person has already purchased it, I would never say anything negative about it, but if i feel there is something wrong, I would say something like, - 'Did you check the alignment, may that needs to be looked at, also look at the discs while you are it'; or - 'Next time when you service the car, inform the service engineer about a 'thak thak' noise when you go over bumps'.

I guess we should have a thread / guide on - "How to best give advice to friends and relatives" that should be really helpful to all. So, if there are some guru's out there, please provide some knowledge and tips that we can incorporate into our daily lives.

Last edited by govigov : 23rd March 2016 at 12:45.
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Old 23rd March 2016, 16:53   #51
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

In my case, I own New Ford Figo and I always refer the product but not the dealer. I gave some nice tips to prevent them from getting robbed by Dealer. Recently acquired another manufacturers car with brilliant discounts.
Thanks to all BHPians.
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Old 24th March 2016, 11:44   #52
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

My close friend wanted to buy a Scorpio after driving mine for a while. The Showroom had some scheme where in I would get some discount coupons on service and some accessories for referral which turns into booking.

Instead I negotiated additional 15K cash discount and passed it on to my friend. He was super happy and did give me a special treat

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Old 24th March 2016, 14:49   #53
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

In the past I have helped my friend to buy a car from the same dealer that I bought my car from.

Since this friend was buying his first car, I did the negotiations, test drive, payments, etc. right until delivery.

In return, the dealer discretely mentioned that he would pass on referral benefits to me. Since, I like to be transparent about financial dealings, I mentioned this to my friend.

The dealer gave me some vouchers which I then handed over to my friend.

The deal worked in favour of my friend. It was beyond what he could have expected.

Guess what, later, he gave the vouchers back to me as an appreciation of the fact that I was transparent.

My view is that we can surely push the dealers for referral incentives till such time that we are not cheating our friends / relatives & being transparent about it.

Friendship / relations last for a lifetime. Money / benefits out of a deal are one time. Do what you feel till such time that your conscious is clear.
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Old 25th March 2016, 13:17   #54
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

Well, there is nothing wrong in charging a fee for the services rendered. On one hand you are giving service of expert opinion to your friend who needs it, for making a decision. Secondly your opinion is helping a particular dealership make business (and earn money of course). So in all might, you have the right to claim a share of the trade which has taken place due to your involvement which otherwise would have not taken place at all.

Looking at it the other way round, while you have a good relation with a particular dealership that does not straightly mean other dealership are providing short services to their customers. Thus, if you recommend this dealership in particular then how do you justify that it is unbiased? In all probability your friend might have approached you to learn the true feel you have experienced from the dealership, as a customer. There is a small hint that your recommendation (coming with commercial backdrop) may not be meet his requirement to the fullest extent.

If you still decide to proceed this way, then it is always better to disclose the commercial relationship you have with the dealership so that anybody seeking your advice can have a complete picture in mind, before taking the call.

Last edited by King_pin09 : 25th March 2016 at 13:23.
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Old 28th March 2016, 01:28   #55
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

Originally Posted by samaspire View Post
I was in a dilemma. Not anymore.
I'm glad that I'm in the company of non-corrupt people, who have helped strengthen my resolution. I'm not going to ask for anything. The intangible benefits far outweigh the tangible ones.
And this is too big a price to pay.
Congratulations on taking the right decision

Let me give you my example
I am very well known in my circle of relatives and close friends for the best advice regarding cars, gadgets, health and lifestyle.
All of them know that I don't expect anything in return.

One particular cousin who benefited from my previous advice ,got me a superb real estate deal which paid back 10 fold.

We may hear something like this from you a few years later.

As you rightly said the intangible and long term benefits are leaps and bounds higher than the immediate tangible benefits.

All the best!

Last edited by ecosport rules : 28th March 2016 at 01:31.
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Old 31st March 2016, 13:43   #56
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Default re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

I have facilitated friends getting their 50 lac+ cars from the dealer that I got mine from. Always got them excellent deals (way better than what was offered to them) I won their appreciation & respect for it - which is way more precious than anything money can buy !

But yes I did & do get VIP treatment at the dealer - which is adequate for me

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Old 10th May 2016, 16:48   #57
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Default Re: Taking favours from a dealership for giving them business

My friend bought a Skoda Rapid 1.5 tdi after he extensively drove mine which is 1.6 tdi. He cancelled his booking for a Tata Safari and went with Rapid. I told him all the positive and negative side of the car and Skoda as a brand. Being a BHPian, it was probably my responsibility to make the hazy picture transparent for him. He is very happy with the car and it's cruising ability.

Now, I had spent a lot of time making him versed wih the Indian automotive industry and his options in his budget, namely City, Verna, Linea, Vento, Rapid and Fiesta. In return, I never expected anything. The time I spent in his decision making process was an investment in our friendship.

Please realise that we can not view everything around us through a monetary prism. Friendship is way ahead of money.
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