Last year I got this wonderful opportunity to volunteer for two months at one of the units of Auroville. Svaram, they make musical instruments and research on sounds. The campus comprised of Admin offices, workshop and showroom. As volunteers, we would switch between all these three depending upon project requirements and of course in the journey of exploration every corner there was a happy place.
Entrance: Svaraagatam, combination of Svara+Raaga+Swagatam
Office had all the administrative stuff, from sales to inventory, it was a control panel. Workshop was where they would research, experiment and then manufacture instruments. It comprised of various sections, like carpentry (they have best of the tools and machines), chimes, pipes, flutes, tuning, painting, stock, everything properly stacked and well in process. The showroom was where all the instruments were on display with placards that told their names, description, and rhythm notes and of course prices.
Though their instruments being world famous, they go to lots of retailers, boutiques and music studios around the world, but the biggest chunk of their revenue is generated from this very in house showroom.
One sales girl (Priya), and one manager (Karthik – He manages operations also) are able to pull a shop which generates maximum revenues to this product excellence driven company. What is it that drives these sales?
While I had this question, I already knew the answer.
Often, while I would pass through the showroom to get to office, I would be attracted towards such excellent instruments that I would just go to them and start playing them (It was literally as if they pulled me). Slowly every morning I started going to showroom and spent good time adoring and playing these beautiful crafts that carried endless harmonious melodies in them. Often visitors would ask me to give them a demo of instruments that they were unable to understand/comprehend. Many times I would myself simply walk to visitors who I felt were fiddling to understand something and then help them play those instruments. To me it was more like a museum than a shop.
Now If I look back, I realize I being a part of the team, never had ‘Selling’ in my mind. The demos that I gave, the enquires I took, were all an act of just sharing the joy of making such incredible instruments. I was just a team member, who was just sharing his excitement and confidence (which of course was backed by product excellence) towards these products. Each demo I gave, I was just enjoying myself. Each enquiry I took, I was just sharing whatever I knew. With no thought to sell, but just to enjoy myself and automatically presenting them an excellent product, the visitors (not customers) were left on their own to decide.
We lived our products. Not sold them.
Sound Healing Studio – Aurelio (Founder of Svaram) playing the sound bed while a visitor relaxes on it.
To know more about Svaram, Check out their website http://svaram.org