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Thursday, June 12, 2008


A real nice guy in a business suit came by to see me yesterday. He wanted to put an Obama for President sign on my building. Forget the politics. It could just as easily have been a guy wanting to put up a McCain sign. Business owners are nuts if they put up political party signs. It’s one thing to vote, write blogs, write representatives, and profess your views privately; but business is business. Endorsing political views in the service or entertainment business is a dangerous move. A customer, reader, or movie fan may love the work done on their vehicle, book by an author, or movie starring a famous actor or actress; but that can change in a heartbeat with political advocacy. Profess publicly who you’re voting for in the next election, and you risk pissing off half your customers or fans. Anyway, the conversation in my office went like this after I invited him in, thinking he was there to make an appointment.

“Who are you voting for in the Presidential election this November,” he asked with a big smile.

“I don’t discuss politics here, Sir,” I answered carefully, because I’d never been asked the question before at the start of a customer conversation. “Can I help you with a car or truck repair?”

He nodded, glancing around at the pictures and licenses on the walls, looking for clues.

“You have a nice looking family.”

“Thanks,” I replied, wondering if the street had birthed a new con game.

“Would you consider putting an Obama for President sign on your building?”

“No,” I admit to some surprise, because his request is another first. I’ve been here since 1976, and no one has wanted to put up a political sign before. Maybe it’s my new paint job I had done a few years ago.

“Are you a McCain supporter,” Mr. Politico asks with a concerned look.

“I won’t be putting up a McCain for President sign either,” I counter truthfully. “Politics and the service business don’t mix.”

“Well, thank you for your time. Can I have one of your business cards for my records?”

“Sure,” I handed him one, and he left after a handshake.

In the Presidential race, my business property is Switzerland. :)


Jordan Summers said...

Switzerland, you're absolutely right. If I had a physical business, I'd definitely avoid stickers. Heck, I don't think I've had bumper sticker since I was 17/18 years old and they definitely weren't political when I did. Of course, they 'might' have been a tad cheeky. ;)

BernardL said...

Yea, Jordan, except for the cheeky or funny bumper stickers on cars, anything else can put your paint job or tires in danger out here. :)

Bernita said...

Politics makes some people so bloody radical.
"Switzerland, you're absolutely right."
I agree w/Jordan and you.

The only thing on our car is a "Support our troops."

Nobody better mess w/that.

BernardL said...

Yep, I have the 'Support Our Troops' tags on every vehicle, Bernita. As you say, messing with them can be hazardous to their health.