Various Other Pacesetter Corporation Experiences
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Thanks to Pacesetter Corp. and their attempted legal action to shut down this site, we have now started asking each author to swear, under penalty of perjury, that everything stated in their story is true. The author of this story has confirmed that everything stated in it is true. Also, someone seems to have posted this story on the misc.consumers.house newsgroup, so it can be read there as well.
Subject: Pacesetter experience to post
I don't mind if you include this on your site, but I would like to withhold my name and e-mail address, because Pacesetter did something nice for me and I'm pretty much reporting what I experienced. I don't think it would be cool to rip on them after they helped me out.
I purchased a home a year ago, and recently the inside handle on the kitchen storm door broke, leaving the door unlockable. I knew the previous owners had bought a lot of stuff from Home Depot, so I went there in search of a replacement. I found no doors at all for which the handles looked remotely like mine. I even bought a completely new handle kit, but the screwhole measurements didn't match up. Honestly, I really wanted to replace the broken piece with the correct part, so it would match the front storm door. Plus, these doors looked pretty cool with the clear plexiglass handles (my outside handle was good, and I didn't want to replace the entire assembly).
I examined the door very closely hoping to find the manufacturer's name. I finally found a small sticker that said 'Pacesetter Corp.', and got on the Internet to find the company. Funny enough, the first link I came to was your site (and I thank you for pre-educating me.... I needed it).
I then went to the main Pacesetter home page, and could find no central contact info (or customer service number, as I was hoping for). If you wanted to contact the company, it all seemed geared towards generating a sales lead, with a form to fill out. I wasn't about to do that. I was pleased, though, to find a .JPG image of my exact storm door in the site, so I knew I was on the right track.
I found that they had a local outfit here, and called them the next day. The lady was very nice, and was able to pull up my address which was on file for the work they had done for the previous owner. She told me she'd send me the part free of charge, although I offered in fairness to pay (after all, it wasn't me who had originally bought the doors). Her response about charging me for the replacement part was, "They never do" -- I thought this was cool and generous.
Unfortunately, almost 60 days passed and I didn't see the new handle arrive in the mail. I called again this morning, and I think I talked to the same woman. She pulled up some notes to show that the order had been placed, and should have shipped. She said she would resubmit it, but then mentioned that they stock the part locally if I wished to drop by to pick it up. I jumped at that, and got directions to their office.
She mentioned that they were hard to spot, and she was right. They were kind of buried back in a warehouse-office complex, and had no distinguishing sign. I noticed a Pacesetter truck outside and knew I had the right place. Inside, the office was very interesting. There was no sign of a receptionist or secretary in sight (and I never saw the woman I talked to -- it was obviously NOT a retail storefront. I was instantly reminded of my favorite movie of all time, "Glengarry, Glen Ross". The tables were meeting hall-style foldouts, with metal folding chairs. The wall decor SCREAMED 'high-pressure sales' -- tons of posters and charts of salesmens' monthly figures, including one that was like a dartboard, with one salesman hitting the bullseye! One of the marker boards had a note with instructions to quit contacting a particular individual -- who knows if this was because the lead was a 'deadbeat', or if maybe they had threatened to sue? With only one person mentioned, I figure it must have been some extreme case, or else they wouldn't care.
Thru a window to an adjacent office, I noticed a slick-looking guy in heavy conversation with an individual -- couldn't tell if it was a staffer or a sales lead. He didn't acknowledge my presense, and I didn't want to knock on the door to interrupt. About a minute later, two guys in casual dress clothes came in the door, looking like they had just come out of the field. I figured they were sales guys. Thanks to your site (and the atmosphere of the place), I was very much on guard mentally.... haha. One of them immediately shook my hand and asked my name. Now you know the difference when you meet an average person and shake their hand, and when you meet a ravinous wolf and shake their hand..... haha. I knew I was being sized up immediately. I was nice, and mentioned that I was there to pick up a part for the storm door. One of the guys said he'd check on it and disappeared into another room. The second guy cranked back in a chair and started pitching me, asking about the home, what I had and didn't have. I still was nice and told him that the previous owner had done it all, and that I wasn't budgeting anything towards home improvement in the coming year.
Finally, the slick-looking guy I had seen in the office came out with a box with my parts (I had figured him as a manager or something). He asked my name, shook my hand, and showed me the complete door handle assembly. I identified the broken piece, but he handed me the entire box. I offered again to pay, but he declined and thanked me for stopping by. I tell ya -- with three of those guys standing around me, it reminded me EXACTLY of that scene in "Predator 2" where Danny Glover is in the alien ship at the end, and all these predators come out with their boss and surround him. You think they are just about to kill him when the leader predator offers Glover an antique flintlock pistol as a token of respect and lets him leave the ship. : ) I got home, repaired the door, and am most pleased.
I'll close this by saying again that my intention is not to rip on Pacesetter here, because I really feel they did me a favor which may have saved me the cost of a whole new storm door. I had not heard of Pacesetter before researching the door or finding your site, so this was my first experience. I do want to say that the environment I saw at their office brought a chill to my spine and made me thank God that I'm in a profession where I struggle to keep up with the needs of my clients (instead of the reverse). When I was in my late teens, I got sucked into a 'fast-paced' sales position for a local gym chain that I quit after 2 days, when I saw the 'bait' followed by the unscrupulous high-pressure tactics they were using to reel in memberships. You simply have to give up any semblance of conscience or morals to harden yourself to screwing people on a daily basis for a living, and I got the impression that the sales staff as Pacesetter were living under that kind of environment. God bless them.
Thanks for the ear, and I wish you the best.
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