What is Wrong with U.S. Businesses? Case in Point

Real Estate Agent with RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate

What is Wrong with U.S. Businesses? Case in Point

Some say it has been the ruination of U.S. industry what overseas manufacturers can do to compete and shut out U.S. fortune cookie without the answermanufacturing businesses.  Cheap labor and plenty of it seems to be part of the issue.  But I always wonder about all this Six Sigma and other quality programs U.S. manufacturers implemented...or at least attempted to.  Small manufacturing businesses just do not take the right steps to look at their operations in a critical way.  There is nothing to be gained with the rosy red glasses on when you are losing money to oversea competitors.

When I first bought an convection/microwave oven as my second oven I had no doubt that it would be a GE.  I had heard about all their Six Sigma quality controls to eliminate customer issues with their appliances.  What could be better.  Well within a month I had issues with the oven and actually this happened twice within the year warranty.  I bought the extended warranty then for an outrageous amount of money (bad move on my part).  Oven failed again and I was told even though I fought it to higher levels, my oven issue was not covered by the warranty!  Never bought a GE appliance since.

Recently ordering bathroom light fixtures online from a U.S. New England company I had the experience of broken shades in the mail.  Well first I had my first two stolen (according to UPS they delivered them to a door I don't have) when I was home that day.  So the company resent the next 2 light fixtures out to me and both shades were damaged.  Yes, UPS does not read 'Caution Handle with Care'...we've all seen the YouTube videos demonstrating it.  The packaging was so poorly engineered..protecting the metal without protecting the glass well.  Called the company and they would start a process on the loss fixtures and send me replacement fixtures.

Replacement fixtures came but I only needed the shades replaced.  Just throw out the fixture and keep the shade I was told.  Really!  However, these 2 were damaged in the same place as the others.  More calls, more replacements.  I now have 5 light fixtures when I needed 2 (3 with broken shades though).  Is there not something wrong with a company like many others that don't look at what their shipping problems are that so hurt their bottom line.  Early on I asked for the shades to be double wrapped and shipped differently but was ignored.  I could not possibly be the only one with this breakage problem.  Where are the basic quality controls to look at customer returns or breakage of items shipped?  

What does this have to do with real estate?  It is not just a rant on U.S. businesses lack of addressing basic controls, it has to do with jobs.  If we can not continue to compete in niche industries how do we grow our economy and jobs.  Without jobs, we have a lack of home buying.  These are continued key issues businesses need to embrace and really make the changes that better their bottom line.  It just boggles my mind sometimes.  Listen to your consumer!

Well yes, this is a small part of our U.S. companys' problems with manufacturing, quality and labor but it again comes home to roost.  We need to make huge changes to survive well.  What is Wrong with U.S. Businesses? Case in Point.


 Ginny Lacey Gorman is a Rhode Island waterfront Real Estate Agent who works and knows the North Kingstown RI geographic area of homes for sale, schools, happenings and important tidbits of information well.


Coastal, water view, ocean front, luxury and waterfront Rhode Island real estate are my specialty.  If you are considering Buying, Selling or Relocating to Rhode Island and need a real estate Professional it would be my pleasure to help you!    When you are in need of an internet savvy RI realtor® who sells homes in this real estate marketcall Ginny today at 401.529.7849 or email at Ginny@RiHouseHunt.com. 
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the RI waterfront Realtor of Choice


Ginny L. Gorman, a purveyor of Fine RI Waterfront Real Estate   

Specializing in waterfront, ocean front, vacation, coastal and luxury homes for sale in North Kingstown, South Kingstown, Narragansett, Jamestown, Charlestown, East Greenwich, Exeter, West Greenwich RI and beyond ...  I sell dreams!  Because there is no place like home...the RI Real Estate Agent in the Sparkly Red Shoes.


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Lenn Harley
Lenn Harley, Homefinders.com, MD & VA Homes and Real Estate - Leesburg, VA
Real Estate Broker - Virginia & Maryland

How many of those U.S. business practices were implemented to satisfy or comply with some government imposed regulation?? 

Businesses can no longer simply manufacture and sell products or services.  They must also comply, comply, comply.

Get rid of the regulations and let businesses compete on price and performance. 

Jul 30, 2013 09:39 PM #1
Bobbie Smith
Stroudsburg, PA

Ginny, How sad is that. All those shades and they still are not correct. How is that cost effective? Your point is well taken and has happened to almost all of us, I am sure. Hope you get new undamaged shades soon.

Jul 30, 2013 09:41 PM #2
Robert Smith
Preview Properties, PC - http://www.RealEstateMich.com - Brighton, MI
SRES, Search for Homes Brighton-Howell-SE Michigan

Ginny, there is actually a  trend developing for "re-shoring," or bringing back manufacturing jobs to the continental US.  There are a variety of reasons.  Production in smaller lots means companies don't have so much cash tied up in inventory, they can adapt quicker with product changes, savings on logistics, and the inherent difficulties in keeping management and labor on the same page - tough when you're halfway across the world and don't speak the same language.  Truly a study in "lost in translation." That's why there are so many quality issues, in my opinion.

Write letters or email or call those companies when you have quality problems with a product. THe more they hear, the more likely they are to find a way to fix it. Hopefully, that will be by bringing jobs back home!

Jul 30, 2013 10:07 PM #3
Janis Borgueta
Key Properties of the Hudson Valley - Newburgh, NY
LIC RE Salesperson

Unfortunately I don't see things getting better any time soon. YES we need jobs back in the USA and logic needs to filter into a good business model. Regulations need to make sense for business rather than provide obstacles. Not sure where we are headed, but your experience is not unique!

Jul 30, 2013 10:17 PM #4
John McCormack, CRS
Albuquerque Homes Realty - Albuquerque, NM
Honesty, Integrity, Results, Experienced. HIRE Me!

Good morning Ginny -

We try to buy USA but it can be challenging to find prices and quality that make it reasonable.  A sad statement and one that may ruffle some feathers but it's true.  I don't see it getting any better soon but hopefully one day we will be bringing jobs back home and will be taking pride in craftsmanship.

Jul 30, 2013 10:24 PM #5
Dorie Dillard CRS GRI ABR
Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.750.6899 - Austin, TX
Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate

Good morning Ginny,

I'm with Janis..I don't see things getting better any time soon. Lenn has a point..Get rid of the regulations and let businesses compete on price and performance. 

Jul 30, 2013 10:47 PM #6
Anita Clark
ColdwellBanker SSK Realtors ~ 478.960.8055 - Warner Robins, GA
Realtor - Homes for Sale in Warner Robins GA

Ginny: I would love to see the trend reverse but do not see how it is going to happen for the reason Lenn mentioned.  Some companies do not want to deal with all the regulatory issues.

Jul 30, 2013 11:01 PM #7
George Souto
George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages - Middletown, CT
Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert

Ginny I have been pretty fortunate with items shipped to me, but I understand what you are saying.  I did have a medicine cabinet that the manufacture had to send me a glass door twice because each time it was broken in shipping.  Looking at the way they packaged it, they had to be spending a significant amount of money replacing these glass doors.

Jul 30, 2013 11:49 PM #8
Joan Cox
House to Home, Inc. - Denver Real Estate - 720-231-6373 - Denver, CO
Denver Real Estate - Selling One Home at a Time

Ginny, our U.S. companies and their customer service is lacking, and that is the place they need to start improvement!   Sending the entire fixture when you only need the shade is just plain stupid!

Jul 30, 2013 11:55 PM #9
Ginny Gorman
RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate - North Kingstown, RI
Homes for Sale in North Kingstown RI and beyond

Thanks all...it is somewhat a rant that I know falls on many deaf ears but there are companies who manage the compliance and government interference end better than others.  It is just so disheartening when you want small businesses to succeed and they struggle because of the lack of knowledge of how to address their own shortcomings... I dealt with quality in a large corporate environment before I dove into real estate.  It is what will keep us a viable and healthy economy I believe...

Jul 31, 2013 12:45 AM #10
Clint Mckie
Desert Sun Home, commercial Inspections - Carlsbad, NM
Desert Sun Home, Comm. Inspection 1-575-706-5586

Hi Ginny,

Very nice post today. The United States is experiencing a rapid decline in what we used to call customer service. Although I have a very highly rated customer service number of 99.99 percent.

Many would be lucky to hit the 50% mark. Take a look at my post I posted today and you will see exactly what I am talking about.

Have a wonderful day in North Kingstown.

Best, Clint McKie

Jul 31, 2013 01:29 AM #11
Liz and Bill Spear
RE/MAX Elite 513.520.5305 www.LizTour.com - Mason, OH
RE/MAX Elite Warren County OH (Cincinnati/Dayton)

Ginny, My day job company is global.  It's amazing to me how many hoops we have to jump through to satisfy each location we sell to.  There is no global standard.  China asks for one thing, Japan another and Europe another thing entirely and the irony is most of what is asked for doesn't have much to do with product safety or function, but some administrative requirement.  Six Sigma does work, the challenge is it has to be applied to the right metrics, and in the case of the GE oven it certainly sounds like they didn't measure the right things to ensure the customers product met their satisfaction.  P.S.  Full disclosure, I'm a Six Sigma certified engineer :)  Bill

Jul 31, 2013 01:47 AM #12
Debbie Reynolds
Platinum Properties - Clarksville, TN
Your Dedicated Clarksville TN Real Estate Agent

Ginny, It is about quality control and cutbacks. At least we are responsible for our service and the quality we give our clients.

Jul 31, 2013 02:19 PM #13
Joe Petrowsky
Mortgage Consultant, Right Trac Financial Group, Inc. NMLS # 2709 - Manchester, CT
Your Mortgage Consultant for Life

There are the haves and have nots when it comes to customer service. I patronize companies that have good customer service and stay away from those that don't.

Jul 31, 2013 07:49 PM #14
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