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Inside

 
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CAM News & Updates
 
 
 
President's Message

nancypresident-engjun.pngNot that I’m a huge Taylor Swift fan, but she said it best … “haters gonna hate.”

On occasion, depending on the severity of a complaint that comes to CAM, I have the opportunity to speak directly with someone in the claims division at a van line or at a moving company.  It’s an incredibly thankless job because, let’s face it, they rarely are speaking to someone who’s happy. 

When Barb Garnett, who was the complaints boss at SIRVA, retired, I remember having a conversation with her near her last day and telling her how utterly amazed I was with the job that she did and the length of time she did it.  16 years and 11 months … but who’s counting … I would have been off on stress leave after the first summer! 

A recent complaint that came through CAM resulted in me asking the member, as well as their supervisor, about a particular situation that had escalated because the complainant was using increasingly aggressive language and liberally sprinkling their commentary with sarcasm.  I asked if CAM could call the customer out, which would essentially make me the bad guy and hopefully allow for a smoother claims process for the member.

I can’t tolerate bullying or any kind of aggressive dialogue, especially when the attacks are aimed at the person who is trying to help. 

Recent events in our world have taught us that we need to be kinder.  We need to be more respectful than we have been.  I was surprised during this complaint that the customer didn’t get that, making it an increasingly difficult situation to try and resolve.  Haters are definitely going to continue to hate and, despite what I felt was an appropriate response to the customer, I feel it didn’t help.

So how do we deal with bullies?  I say stand up to them!  Sometimes it works and the customer calms down and starts negotiating in a fair and respectful manner, and then sometimes, like in this particular situation, I fall on the sword and redirect the aggressiveness at me.  And then, while it’s not easy to do, I have to “shake it off”.

Check out the section below with some practical perspectives on dealing with aggressive customers.  Thanks to CAM educator Megann Willson of Panoptika for providing two great articles to us.

Wishing you a smooth August. It’s going to be a hot one in so many ways.

 
 
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Abusive customers – how much should you take before you take a stand?
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The customer is always right - except when the customer is wrong. Trying to perform acrobatics to please belligerent, unreasonable, and incorrect customers can cost you far more than simply kissing their business goodbye.

The moment you let a customer bully you, you've completely lost that customer's respect. Worse, you've set yourself up for a relationship of further bullying and abuse. When you lay down the law and demand respect due to a professional, you're creating the credibility that the bully needs to see before he begins to trust that you can do the job.

Here are a couple of short articles with tips to help guide you and your staff.

Defuse exploding customers without being bullied

Stop being bullied by customers

 
 
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Moving industry experiencing setback this government posting season

July 21, 2021 - The Canadian Military Family magazine reports that “the moving industry across North America is experiencing a reduced capacity in drivers and labour, affecting companies’ ability to meet contractual obligations this year.”  This means that moves during the active posting season could be affected and take much longer than expected.  While not interviewed directly, CAM was referenced in the article.

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Another judgement against Move Me Again

camjuly272021-3a.jpgJuly 18, 2021 - Toronto lawyer Rocco Scocco has recorded another successful judgement against Move Me Again, a company well known for hundreds of complaints about unethical moving practices. 

The recent Superior Court of Justice ruling is detailed here.

And we can’t wait to hear from Rocco at our conference about his successes.


Commercial Mover Directory now available on www.mover.net

July 16, 2021 - The Commercial Mover section of our website is now online!  As you may remember, with several municipalities’ contracts specifying that relocation services must be done by a CAM member, we have been happily onboarding moving companies that specialize only in commercial moves. 

There are a couple of benefits to identifying commercial members in our directory – a consumer doing their own mover search (which is happening more and more) will not be wasting everyone’s time by contacting a corporate mover when they are looking for two guys to move a few things across town.  More importantly, office staff who have been tasked with finding a mover will have an easier time locating these specialized companies as they’ll be identified as a commercial mover in the directory, in a similar fashion to our international members.

Contact us if you’d like more information. 

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Non-Member complaints up 562% over last year

camjuly272021-3c.pngJuly 12, 2021 - There’s no question that moving fraud in on the rise and has been at an alarming rate in Canada for the past two years.  Since June 2020, CAM has received 188 complaints about non-members, with almost a third relating to just one rogue mover alone (including their many identities).

In May and June 2021 alone, CAM received 53 non-member complaints – a whopping 562% increase over the same time last year.  While a few of these are not related to our ‘regular’ bad actors, most are and have provided one heartbreaking story after another.

To try and combat this and get critical information into the hands of consumers BEFORE they’ve chosen their mover, the CAM Scam Team of lawyer Rocco Scocco, the Scam Moving Companies Victims Support Group, ProBono Ontario, and the BBBs of Atlantic Canada and Southwestern Ontario collaborated on a special project to provide information to a couple of provincial real estate bureaus/commissions to distribute to their realtors.  We came up with a joint bulletin you can see below. 

Contact CAM to get the jpg version of this, or click here for the pdf.  Share, Share SHARE!  Send it to your real estate contacts and home stagers, as well as your relocation manager liaisons; post it on your social media pages; give it to your contacts in law enforcement.  There is an infinite amount of opportunities to share this important information.  The more word gets out beforehand, the more chance we can save consumers from these despicable vultures.

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In other news:  Shortage of work trucks due to global chip shortage

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As if there wasn’t enough challenge this year. A shortage of computer chips that are used for everything from engines to airbags has disrupted vehicle production for months, squeezing dealer inventory and leaving shoppers with scant selection and elevated prices. As automakers prioritize building pricey trucks and SUVs for individual buyers, commercial fleet operators—which generally favour no-frills models and buy them at a discount—have been disproportionately affected, analysts and dealers say.

As a result, truck leases and rentals grew during a surge of e-commerce shopping last year and have continued to score with fleets “desperate for trucks” amid rising demand and an ongoing microchip shortage that's hampered new truck production.
Vice President Don Ake, a commercial vehicle analyst, is concerned that leasing and rental opportunities will dry up as demand remains strong for both new and used trucks.

As well, Ritchie Bros. reported this week that “unprecedented demand” had driven used tractor-trailer prices up 30% year-over-year through its auction and marketplace venues.

Read more here

July 22, 2021 - Chip shortage driving more truck leasing and rental interest

July 12, 2021 – Chip shortage’s latest toll: a shortage of work trucks

 
 
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A note about subcontracting

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This summer is challenging for a lot of reasons that we’ve highlighted over the past few newsletters.

However, there is an increasing frequency in the past few weeks, of complaints to CAM or on social media, questioning the integrity of our industry, our trade association, our members’ credibility, and CAM’s standards when some CAM members, in consumers’ opinions, are not adhering to them and are more or less behaving no differently than scam movers.

Turns out these complaints and public remarks involving overcharging, cash only payments, theft, and lack of paperwork, are almost always based on the member hiring a subcontractor to do the work, causing the customer to lash out because they hired you – not someone less than you – to do the work.

Every CAM mover member signs our Code of Ethics every year which states:

“When referring a lead from CAM, use an accredited CAM member for all origin and destination services and, if unable to use an accredited CAM member, advise the customer that their household goods and personal effects are being moved by a company that is not a CAM-accredited member and therefore not subject to CAM’s operating standards and practices.”

While the Code of Ethics wouldn’t apply to every piece of work you take on, perhaps it’s a good guideline to consider when you find yourself, for whatever reason, unable to service a job.

Have confidence in the company you choose to help you out of your bind.  After all, it’s your reputation and credibility on the line.  Consider outsourcing to a CAM member who has already committed to the same standards of quality and services as you.  And inform your customer about outsourcing beforehand, so you aren’t trolling fodder on social media.

 
 
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Planning to Golf in September? Register now and win!

CAM Golf Day – September 13, 2021

There’s less than a month left to get in on CAM supplier Advantage Box’s “Tee Box Advantage” Contest! One lucky name will be drawn from those registered mover members on August 15th and will have their round paid for by Advantage Box. 

Join us at the beautiful Carlisle Golf Club for our 25th annual golf day. Lunch and post-game meals and beverages, cart, swag bag, and the reprise of last year’s popular Snowbird’s Auto Connection’s hole-in-one game are included. 

And great news, there are no restrictions on the number of golfers we can have! Register here and check out our foursome rate!

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And we can’t do this without support. A big thank you to our sponsors. Would you like to get in on the sponsoring and prizing fun? Contact nancy@mover.net.

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CAM Conference – November 14 – 16, 2021

We’d like your input!

As of July 1st, Alberta, and Edmonton specifically, opened up and are now encouraging indoor gatherings again.  After our site visit with the hotel on August 3rd, we will be able to make a balanced decision about the conference’s future.

But we’d like your input.  Are you planning to come to the conference, or not?  Or are you somewhere in between?   We’d love to know what you think about holding an in-person conference this year.

Please take 2 or 3 minutes to answer 6 (or less) short questions.  It would be incredibly helpful to us.  We’ll show our appreciation by drawing three names from the survey respondents to each win a $50 Timmie’s card.  The draw will take place on decision day:  August 9th.  To answer a few questions, click here.

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Thank You, Sponsors!

CAM would not be anywhere without our wonderful supporters.  It’s been a crazy few years and we really appreciate your support!

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COVID-19/vaccine-related HR considerations

As we settle into our next ‘new normal’ of this pandemic journey, there are some HR considerations that should be addressed by your company.

On July 13th, employment lawyer Daniel Lublin, Partner at Whitten & Lublin, was on national TV discussing vaccine policies at work.  According to Lublin, employers have a duty to provide a safe workplace (in Ontario, that’s required by the Ontario Occupational Health and Safety Act), which includes protecting workers from hazards related to infectious diseases. 

So the question is, can you be fired for refusing a COVID-19 vaccine?

We thought we’d pass along this article, plus many other COVID-related topics, that Whitten & Lublin have on their blog page https://toronto-employmentlawyer.com/blog/ 

 
 

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Don’t Lead with Lower Prices

Have you ever seen an ad that says “New Low Price”?

What effect did that have on you?  Did it make you want to purchase the item?  Or did it make you question why the price was lowered?

In this article that was originally featured by Pricing for Associations, Dr. Michael Tatonetti talks about the psychology of how you position discounts, and why it matters.

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Are you getting enough water?

CAM President Nancy Irvine was the administrator at the Nova Scotia Firefighters School a long time ago, but something always stayed with her from her time there. Firefighters often suffer from dehydration and there are "pee charts" up all over the school to remind everyone to drink lots.  While talking about this may be distasteful to some of you, it’s a very practical tool that works!  With the summer heat and humidity, it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch to say that movers can get dehydrated too.  Drink plenty of water!

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Product Spotlight

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Snowbirds Auto Connection Ltd.

Snowbirds Auto Connection is a family-owned and operated vehicle transport company providing reliable, door-to-door, damage-free transportation across Canada and the U.S. SAC offers a variety of services including coast-to-coast transportation, cross-border relocation and vehicle storage.

Learn More

 
 

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Heat Exhaustion Reminder

It’s hot. It’s humid. The job is manual. There’s not a lot of rest. These are the perfect conditions for heat exhaustion.

There are two types of heat exhaustion:

  1. Water depletion. Signs include excessive thirst, weakness, headache and loss of consciousness.
  2. Salt depletion. Signs include nausea and vomiting, muscle cramps and dizziness.

If any of your crew has symptoms of heat exhaustion, it's essential to immediately get them out of the heat and rest, preferably in an air-conditioned room. If you can't them get inside, try to find the nearest cool and shady place and have them remove any tight or unnecessary clothing and drink plenty of fluid (avoid caffeine, alcohol and energy drinks). If you have the opportunity, apply other cooling measures such as fans or ice towels.

If such measures fail to provide relief within 15 minutes, seek emergency medical help because untreated heat exhaustion can progress to heatstroke. Click here for more information on heat exhaustion.

It is important that you explain to your customer what is going on – they may be able to assist with comfort and care, rather than call CAM later to complain that your crew is sitting around or taking forever to complete their move.

As Sgt. Phil Esterhaus used to say on Hill Street Blues ... “Let’s be careful out there!”

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*Graphic is available in English and French. Contact CAM to get a copy.


Concerning Development out of NJ – Movers could be responsible for PBO damage

New Jersey’s Division of Consumer Affairs is changing regulations and some proposed rules could make NJ movers liable for damage to packed by owner (PBO) items.

The proposed rule change will make it difficult to deny a PBO claim without citing consumer negligence if a mover accepts PBOs. It would place the burden of proof for denying a claim on the mover, that the damage occurred when the consumer was packing PBOs, usually before the mover’s pick-up, without citing negligence. Finally, it will make movers liable for all goods accepted, whether packed by the mover, the consumer or a third party. A mover would be liable for concealed damage in PBO cartons or containers, boxes, crates, cabinets drawers, or other places that a consumer may pack items, at carrier’s legal liability, or under additional coverage if the consumer increased liability or insurance.

The new rule does allow a mover to refuse to transport those items – and refusing to transport will harm all movers. Consumers may end up paying more if movers charge the customer to repack their items into cartons. Consumers may cancel the move on the spot or choose to rent a truck or find a bait-and-switch rogue mover.

It goes without saying that the New Jersey Warehousemen & Movers Association (NJWMA) is opposed to this proposed rule. You can read more in this information sent out by the NJWMA.

Obviously, CAM will keep you informed about developments on this.


And if that’s not scary enough, how about identity theft of your moving company?

Can you imagine having your moving company’s identity, website, transportation number and all of your online reviews stolen and consumers being scammed out of thousands of dollars using your name?  It’s happening now in California.

Listen to this report.  It could be our future.  And please, keep checking your identities online to make sure that it’s you that’s being represented and not some poser.

 
 

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Canadian Association of Movers (CAM)

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