Profile of Success: A Leg Up on the Field
WHAT GOT HIM HERE: Encouragement from his wife, Sonia. Having begun his professional career in the advertising industry, Doug Mockett quickly became disenchanted with how advertisers were viewed. “When things didn’t go well,” he says, “you were a goat. And when things went well, the client was a hero. You’re kind of stuck in this neverland of never being able to take credit for anything.”
Sonia, an architectural space planner, pushed Doug to try his hand at a secret passion of his: direct marketing. He began marketing grommets for office furniture, a product she believed all furniture manufacturers needed. Mockett wrote a direct marketing letter and mailed it along with a sample of the grommet to the presidents of 400 furniture manufacturers. Much to his surprise, he received nearly 185 phone calls in response. This spurred him to mail his first catalog in 1983, a four-page edition with grommets as the sole product. The mail piece has grown into a 300-page book today.
WHAT FACTORS HAVE MADE MOCKETT SUCCESSFUL: Mockett & Co. builds its success on the way it treats its customers. “We mention customer service in the catalog,” he says. “We live it and breathe it.” While Mockett gives all the credit to his employees, whom he says are empowered do whatever it takes to get an order to somebody, he too embodies the mantra.
A trained pilot, Mockett has, on occasion, hand-delivered orders to customers who needed special attention. “Eleven years ago when UPS went on strike, I flew all over the Western U.S. to deliver orders daily,” he recalls.
The company offers a lifetime guarantee on all products and doesn’t hit customers with freight or restocking fees. What’s more, Mockett keeps a large inventory in stock, which helps it ship close to 98 percent of orders on the same day they’re received.