The level of integrity of a business owner can make or break any business. In the home and business contents inventory industry, it is critical. The need for integrity is highlighted in our Code of Ethics, under which all members of NICA agree to perform business.
As a service professional providing a home inventory, you are being entrusted with possibly more information than many family members have. And when inventorying a business, you might see or hear confidential information. Keeping that information to yourself builds credibility.
There are three specific subcategories under the Integrity section that we want to focus on today:
- Answer all questions truthfully and honestly prior to, during, and after services rendered.
- Display honesty and integrity in all business and personal relationships.
- Promote and advertise services honestly.
Honest and truthful – a key element of the Code of Ethics
Being honest and truthful during the entire inventory process is extremely important. Answering questions fully is essential for a successful outcome of the sales process as well as the inventory process itself. If there is a misunderstanding, it is imperative to discuss and reach an agreement before proceeding. Likewise, advertise your services honestly. Whether you are promoting your business in print ads, through promotional mailings, or face-to-face at vendor events, always ensure that your information is straight-forward and honest.
Developing positive customer and personal relationships will help you receive further business via referrals due to your clients’ comfort level with your integrity.
Examples of recent phone calls regarding integrity
Following are examples from recent phone calls. These were not regarding any member of NICA, and we are very proud of this! Some specific things happening in the industry that are not in line with our focus on ethics:
- Asking for and receiving copies of a person’s inventory records – this is a breach of privacy and is regarded as very poor business practices. When becoming certified, NICA does not ask for these records for this reason. Those requesting to be certified must state that they have completed at least 2 inventories, and state that this is a true statement. We will never ask for your clients’ inventory records.
- Selling names in a database – this goes without saying. Keeping your database confidential is – or should be – part of your standard confidentiality agreement. The only time it is proper to share thie information is with the clients’ consent, such as when asking for testimonials to place on yoru website.
- Not showing up for an appointment – we can’t imagine not showing up, but it happens, unfortunately.
Click here for a full list of the Code of Ethics.