It was beyond time for me to update my photo- something that I had been intending to do for years. I thought that I would save money by going to a discount photographer in our local shopping mall. That was Bad Idea #1.The second error in judgment that I made was scheduling this momentous occasion about two weeks prior to Christmas. You guessed it! There I was in my business attire surrounded by seemingly hordes of crying and laughing children waiting to have their photos taken with Santa Claus.
Part of me wanted to escape; part of me convinced myself that things would work out.It was the moment when the elf-cladden photographer asked me to step into the studio that I knew I was in trouble. As she positioned my stiff body and reassured me that she was a professional, I felt temporarily at ease. This was despite the cacophony of tiny bells jingling as she moved about in her elf costume.
Although it was a bit hard to hear over the din created by the sounds of a half-dozen children dressed head to toe in red and green velvet and black patent leather shoes, I managed to take a seat to view the digital photos of my photo op session. With some reservation and a pre-disposition for disliking any photos, candid or posed, taken of me, I previewed the five images on the seemingly immense screen which, much to my dismay, could be viewed by just about anyone in the store. Without assigning blame or wondering what indeed I was thinking that day, I asked the festive-looking, green-suited photographer to retake the photos. The reason for this can be summarized in three phrases- lipstick on teeth, facial contortions, and half-closed eyes. Having said this, the person who had previously wielded the camera couldn't comprehend my dissatisfaction with the results. Ten minutes later, after having repeated the procedure, I paid my $12 and left the store.
As you have probably guessed by now, my new photo was taken by a highly reputable photographer in a private studio after Christmas. Rather than restless children, Christmas costumes, and frenetic photographers, I encountered a consummate professional photographer who devoted an hour to taking dozens of head-shots. Intermittently, he paused to show me some of the shots to assure that I was pleased with what he was doing. The low-keyed,but highly competent, photographer made me feel incredibly at ease. In fact, by the end of the photo session, I was rather enjoying the snap-snap sound of the mega-sized digital camera.
As my mother always said and continues to say, "Roseann, you get what you pay for!" From this unique experience, I learned the same lesson that I hope clients and prospective clients will learn about my real estate services. A true professional creates value far beyond the price that the clients will incur.