It’s often said that life is too short to spend your time doing something that you do not enjoy . To spend eight hours per day five days per week doing something which you do not enjoy must surely be an example of a form of madness .
Luckily Ray and myself get to go to work each day without ever getting that feeling of dread which many people get at some stage . To have a job which revolves around your passion is a very lucky position to be in . Working in a bike shop also means you get to meet your friends and fellow cyclists regularly . The amazing thing is that sharing your passion with others is actually a good way to make a pretty good living . An incident which happened in the shop yesterday really made me think about this .
A customer came in who was thinking of buying a road bike . I spent some time chatting with him to find out what type of riding he would be doing and trying to get a feel for what bike may be best suited to his needs . Initially I suggested a Giant SCR 4.0 for 539 euro which would have been a good value entry level bike . However as the customer had a slightly bigger budget a Kellys IRC 3.9 with the new Shimano Tiagra 10 speed groupset which is very similar to the 105 or Ultegra setup especially when paired with the carbon forks and seat-stays really caught his eye . At just 1155 euro it is really good value and he actually decided on the Kellys .
As we were chatting the guy told me that he was in a large bike and car accessory shop in Limerick the day before, also looking at bikes . He said that the sales assistant was less than helpfull and gave some interesting replies to his questions . When he asked what size he would require the guy told him that they were all the same size and that you just had to raise up the saddle . This was on a 600 euro road bike which was designed by a former Olympic champion and multiple TDF prologue winner !
There is no adult bike in any bike shop which only comes in one size let alone a road bike .
Then when the customer asked what the difference between the models was ,he was told that he should make up his mind which one he wanted or they would be there all day .
Needless to say there was one less sale that day in the chain store shop .
Obviously the sales assistant had zero interest in bikes or cyclists . To him it was just a job and a way of getting his hands on some minimum wage .This was where the difference lies . Like most bike shop owners we like to help someone to find a bike which suits their needs . The right bike sized properly will be used much more than the wrong one and will lead to another fellow cyclist on the roads .
So there’s the difference , a cyclist in a bike shop can make a living by sharing his passion for the sport whilst a dis-interested person in a bike shop will be frustrated and clock watching and loose his employer potential sales .