Volume 46, Issue 2 - March 2007

Window Guy
A dealer’s perspective
by R. Mark Reasbeck Owner of Coyote Springs Window and Door of Las Vegas.

Thinking Outside the Spot 
Dealer Distributes Unusual Products in a Slower Market

You’ve seen it. A large jacked-up SUV with handicap plates, parked in the “blue spot,” and you think to yourself, how in the world can an impaired person crawl up into that cab? Or how about watching someone skid into the wheelchair spot, jump out of their car and run into the liquor store? Well, today I discovered a new twist to this parking privilege.

Urban Suburban

I was parked in a strip mall (note: NOT a strip club), finishing up a conversation on my cell phone before going for some killer Mongolian beef when I noticed a nice, metallic-green Suburban pass in front of my truck. He parked in a handicap space across the parking lot to my left, and the truck did have the qualifying plates. Trying to say “goodbye” to a long-winded friend, I noticed the driver walked diagonally in front of my truck using a cane. Then he walked into a restaurant a good ten parking spaces from his truck.

“So what?” you ask. There were four empty parking spaces directly in front of the restaurant, 5 feet from the entrance door. Doesn’t it seem a little strange that he would pass up the easy access to the diner and avoid walking across the parking lot?

Ask Dr. Mark

So this little scenario replayed in my mind as I tried to figure why this just happened. I will reveal my conclusive study right here on the pages of Shelter.

Habit- My years of experience have taught me many ways to form a habit. Three weeks of a repetitive act produces a habit: doing the same thing over and over, memorizing the details or surroundings. But the key is repetition. Since this gentleman received the handicap plates, he probably has developed the habit of only looking for blue signs. So I conclude that he no longer searches for a parking space that is NOT handicap accessible and is oblivious to the many empty spaces he passed on his way to secure the blue spot.

Privilege- Although having a handicap permit provides the privilege of parking in a convenient spot, I’m sure most people would gladly trade this privilege for the ability to get around without inconvenience. Since the privilege has taken the place of parking at random, the process of seeing a non-handicap spot with a closer location is not even on the person’s radar.

Comfortable- Each day a series of events and situations come together to form life. How we handle those events will determine how comfortable we are with our position in the human race.The gentleman in the Suburban seemed to be comfortable with the fact that he always parks in the handicap spot, and it may now be uncomfortable to seek out a regular parking space.

Knitting It Together

Could I possibly be the only person who gets all of that from watching a guy walk across the parking lot? Believe it or not, there is a connection to business. 

With business here in Las Vegas off by as much as 50 percent, do I find myself looking for the handicap spot (business as usual), because that is what I always do? Do I bypass the available spots (different ways of doing business) still looking for the parking space with which I am comfortable? 

I’ve done some things to help me think outside the window. One was to diversify some product lines—looking for holes to fill in a building: roof hatches, ladders, fire hose boxes, smoke hatches and sound-proof windows, to name a few. The holes are already in the buildings, the specs are on the blueprints, and someone needs to supply it. It might as well be my company. And, all of this time, I’ve been driving right past them (these opportunities). 

© Copyright 2007 Key Communications Inc. All rights reserved. No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.