So, I am not a huge fan of sales people who could just as easily be pushing cars or insurance or washing machines or — the Better Business Bureau. That is just my own personal feeling and does not represent the views of the employees or (other) owners of Support For Home In-Home Care. People who love cars and have a passion for selling them (or insurance, or …), well that is another story. I am fine with those folks. But when I encounter someone who is genetically engineered to just plain sell — anything and everything — I tend to back away.
So, why am I off on this tangential tirade? One of our office staff got a call from a representative of the Better Business Bureau here in northern California. He wants to talk about our company joining and becoming “accredited” by BBB. So, what does that actually mean? Here is what their Web site says:
If a business has been accredited by the BBB, it means BBB has determined that the business meets accreditation standards which include a commitment to make a good faith effort to resolve any consumer complaints. BBB accredited businesses pay a fee for accreditation review/monitoring and for support of BBB services to the public.
BBB Code of Business Practices represents standards for business accreditation by BBB. Businesses based in the United States and Canada that meet these standards and complete all application procedures will be accredited by BBB. The Code is built on the BBB Standards for Trust, eight principles that summarize important elements of creating and maintaining trust in business.
BBB accreditation does not mean that the business’ products or services have been evaluated or endorsed by BBB, or that BBB has made a determination as to the business’ product quality or competency in performing services.
Businesses are under no obligation to seek BBB accreditation, and some businesses are not accredited because they have not sought BBB accreditation.
I have put in red italics the part that irks me. First of all, accreditation, in virtually every field, means examination, evaluation, audit, verification, certification. It means real work by the accreditation body to determine compliance with standards. What does it mean to BBB? It means that there has been no evaluation or determination of compliance to standards of quality or competence. In other words, what it really means is that you have paid that business a fee so that you have something you can put on your Web site.
So, about this call from the salesman. He said that we should really join the BBB and get “accredited,” because he has had 18 inquiries about our company, so far. Now that is really curious to me, because since starting Support For Home in 2007, I have had one client ask me if we belonged to the Better Business Bureau. I said no, because my own personal experience had been that they were not particularly helpful. The client’s response? “You got that right!”
Now, do we believe in standards? You better believe it. That’s why we belong to and are certified by the California Association for Health Services at Home. That’s why we are members of the National Private Duty Association. That’s why we are certified by the Caregiver Quality Assurance program:
Best wishes, Bert