There is an old style shoe repair shop not far from where I live. The craftsman/owner is named Rocco. I’ve had occasion to take some shoes and other leather products there for repair and he has always done excellent work. How about his prices? I can pretty well guarantee every customer is satisfied, because what Rocco does after inspecting the item carefully, is to look his customer in the eye and say, “ I’ll try to do it for you for $XX.”

With not many words, Rocco successfuly conveys a number of messages:


  1. You are getting an excellent price.
  2. You feel special (there always seems to be some emphasis on the you from Rocco).
  3. If for some reason, he can’t come in at that price (though he always has with me), he has forewarned the customer.

Quality craftsman like Rocco are hard to find. Those who can also share a negotiation lesson with you are rarer still.

Pithy Quote of the Month:

“The shoe that fits one person pinches another; there is no recipe for living that fits all cases.”
…Carl Gustav Jung

This tip was originally published in September 2009.