Independent leasing reps exist because of the intangibles. While these values may vary from rep to rep or company to company, I think there are four that generally stick out.
The first is business acumen: We are problem solvers, thinkers and achievers. Our jobs require us to solve the real business challenges you are facing. We understand concepts in finance such as IRR, time value of money, TCO, etc. These aren't buzz-words for us, they are what separate us from the pack. We are keenly aware of equipment cycles, manufacturers and models, and book vs. useful life values. Why do we understand this stuff? Because as an independent lessor, we have to.
The second intangible is service: Every client of mine has my cellphone number, my email and the direct dial of my sales assistant. And I can assure you we don't work 8a - 5p. Our office is always open. Why? Because we understand that working with a 1-800 leasing company doesn't always sit well when you need an answer now. We get on airplanes, sit in traffic jams, eat Chic-fil-A three times per week (not complaining), sleep in hotels, etc., to make sure we spend time with you face to face. How often does your leasing rep come visit you to help?
Maybe most importantly, we have earned TRUST. How well do you know your leasing rep? Hopefully you understand that independent reps live and die by our reputation. Without reputation, our competition would eat us alive. It takes years to build a relationship and one bad deal to tarnish it. Our trust is our brand.
Finally, we understand the why. Any leasing rep can answer the what, but it's the why that makes us unique. We ask questions - and lots of them. We do this for a variety of reasons, but most importantly, we want to make sure we understand your vision. Sometimes we will offer suggestions and changes based on our experience. Countless times I've been awarded business from an existing or a new client because I've either changed the way they view their problem, or they simply understand that my value is solving their problem.
The purpose of this article is simply to share the value that independent leasing reps like myself bring to the table. When we hear materials management ask us, "What's your price?", we know we have a lot of homework to do. If my client buys from me for price, they will leave me for price.