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Happy Customer

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Story by Lisa MacFarlane

Happy Customer: Jill Killeen

Paul Killeen

Salesman Paul Killeen put Jill Killeen in her first BMW- a 2012 X3 in a gorgeous shade of merlot-red. “No, we are not related,” laughs Jill. “Our shared last name is a pure coincidence, but I have known Paul now for several years. We initially meet at one of the Cabriolet fundraisers and connected over our last names.”

Jill says the solid reputation ofthe BMW brand is what led herto investigate vehicle options at Brian Jesssel BMW, but it was the relationship Paul built with her that kept her returning to the dealership to look at cars. “I had been doing the new car dance for a few years,” she says. “I’d go to look. Then I would test drive something. But I’d decide to wait. Throughout that process, I never felt as though I was a problem customer. I was welcomed by everyone.”

Jill Killeen runs her own Vancouver-based PR and communications company, focusing on the luxury hotel segment. When it was time to upgrade her car, she felt the BMW brand was the right fit for her business, and offered the professional image she wanted to project to clients. “I was driving a Jeep Liberty before the X3. I loved that Jeep, but it was almost nine years old. It had done its time and I felt I was ready for a more grown-up vehicle.” The X3 won Jill over with its sporty good looks, and comfortable, well designed and organized cabin. The X3 is loaded with useful technology like keyless entry and GPS, which are new features for Jill. “I really like being able to walk up to my vehicle, knowing the key is buried in my purse, and be able to unlock the door with the touch of my hand. And the guidance system has actually improved my marriage!” she continues. “I used to rely on my husband’s directions, and of course if I got lost, it was his fault. Now, I simply rely on the guidance system, and if I get lost, it’s my fault!”

Jill also loves the X3’s convenient hatchback with auto close. “I am still driving my youngest to hockey, so all that space in the back is great for his hockey bag and any buddies we drive. I can also load a lot of groceries in the back. That auto close button is magic. She also admits to enjoying the BMW prestige factor. “The hotel bellmen now keep my vehicle out front, or as we say in the biz, ‘up top’. With a background in the hotel industry, Jill knows that successful businesses and brands are built on customer service. The hotels she works with listen to the customerfirst, and then respond to the customer’s needs. “Being in the hospitality industry, I’m very aware of customer service,” she explains. “You know when it’s good, and when it’s not. AtBrian Jessel BMW I was welcomed the moment I stepped through the doors, with two teenaged boys in tow. I had been dismissed at other car dealerships when I 

had my boys with me. It was strange, but for whatever reason, I was not taken seriously. At Brian Jessel BMW, the staff were attentive, but I never felt like I was being ‘sold’. There was no awkward pressure to buy or lease. Paul listened to what I wanted and once I was ready, I was carefully walked through the leasing details, before being introduced to the accounting team.” Jill says that at a good hotel, the service should be genuine and authentic. “If you take care of the customer, you build brand loyalty, and that in turn takes care of your business. This has been my experience at Brian Jessel BMW.”

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Happy Customer: Patrick Dang

Francis Poon

When Patrick Dang was in his twenties, he walked into a BMW dealership in Johannesburg with a blank check from his future father-in-law with instructions to purchase him a car. It was a unique position to be in – purchasing a vehicle he could not yet afford himself as a young man.

It was to be Patrick’s first exposure to BMW, and he wondered if the salespeople would take him seriously. When he walked through the doors that afternoon, he would have had no idea that thirty years later, Patrick himself would be on his sixteenth BMW. Patrick emigrated with his family to Canada in 1994. After the initial purchase of his father-in-law’s 525i, Patrick owned a series of BMWs in South Africa (E30-323i, 520i, E36-323i, E46-325i, E46-328i).

Arriving in Vancouver, his heart was set on acquiring another. With a background in marketing and sales, he would be particular in selecting a dealership at which to purchase a car. “When I came to Canada, I knew I was going to buy a BMW,” Dang remembers. “I was looking forthe same level of service I had experienced at the BMW dealer in Johannesburg.” Dang began shopping around, eventually paying multiple visits to Brian Jessel BMW “I would come in most weekends,” he recalls,” and that is how I met sales consultant Francis Poon. What impressed me most about Francis was that he knew I was not yet ready to make a purchase, but he made the effortto stay in touch with me over one and a halfyears, inviting me to view new models and setting up a some test drives.” Since then, Francis has sold Patrick Dang eleven cars. The Dang family’s most recent purchase was a 550xi, which his wife is driving. His son is behind the wheel of a 335i, and his daughter an X3 SUV 3.0l V6.

Patrick drives an M3 Coupe. Patrick Dang is the President of Sprott-Shaw Degree and Community Colleges and President of KGIC ESL Schools. He has over twenty-six years of marketing and sales experience at senior levels of management. His own experience in sales, and his confidence in Francis Poon as a go to guy at Jessel, has resulted in Dang referring several sales to Francis. “Francis understands the importance of delivering exceptional service. He took the time to get to know me and to discover exactly what model I was the most serious about purchasing. I think Francis is a wonderful sales person. He goes out of his way to make me feel like I am his best client. That is why I always come back to Brian Jessel BMW.” At a recent lunch with a friend at the Cactus Club on Schoolhouse Road, Dang’s car was delivered to the restaurant door following a service. “My friend was in disbelief,” says Dang.

“He was amazed that I did not have to pick up the car myself. It really is above-and-beyond with the level of service from Jessel. You know, Francis and the team always greet me when I come in to the dealership. Jim Murray and Patrick Burgess will see me walk in, and immediately pop over to have a conversation. Their extra effort makes me feel like their only customer.” Patrick Dang acknowledges thatfor him, it is difficultto contemplate driving another brand. “The folks at Brian Jessel BMW,” says Patrick, “live up to BMW’s motto of the Ultimate Driving Experience.”

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Happy Customer: Michael Gottschalk

Kahn Parveez

Imagine you are a designersearching fora new car. You have flipped through glossy magazines, read reviews, and even visited a few dealerships. Excellent cardesign will play a significant role in your decision making. “To be honest, I was a Mercedes person before,” admits award-winning home and product designer Michael Gottschalk. “For years before that, I drove Audis. My vehicle progression has been Audi to Mercedes to BMW.”

Gottschalk says that Mercedes lost him a few years back with their body styling. “In my eyes, their E-class body type wasn’t keeping up, so when the BMW 5 series came out, I was won over.” When Michael first inspects a car, he says he studies the contouring. He views the body shape of a car rather like he would a sculpture.

Like art, the lines of a car are all there for a reason. “It really comes down to good design,” Michael states. “Take for example, the new X5. Its contouring is executed with thought and purpose.” This past summer, Michael purchased a 2011 BMW 550xi from Brian Jessel BMW sales consultant Kahn Parveez. This is Michael’s second BMW, the first being a 535xi, which he traded in. “Over the years, I’ve been exposed to a lot of sales people,” claims Michael. “I can definitely recommend to anyone who is in the market for a BMW, to work with Kahn.”

Michael had been researching a number of vehicles including Porsche’s Panamera, when he first met Kahn. “I liked the Panamera a lot, but I was having a hard time rationalizing the price. Kahn spent the time with me, going over all of the newly designed features of the 550xi, and what was on offer in terms of customer care from Jessel. He made it easyfor me, even offering to bring vehicles to my office to inspect. I’m really happy I went with the 550xi,” he continues.

“The car corners so well. It is really balanced and poised on the road, in any driving conditions.” Michael grew up skiing, and managed to secure his first job designing ski resorts in Europe. He moved to Whistler in 1989 where he has since been responsible for a number of impressive homes in the area. As a Whistler resident with a Vancouver head office, Michael drives the Sea-to-Sky highway several times a week. The 550xi has not let him down. “This car can handle anything,” he exclaims. “Do you rememberthe minus 18 celcius cold snap we had recently?

The road from Whistlerto Squamish was a mess – horizontal snow, icy conditions, the works. But my new BMW handled the roads without issue. In terms of the engineering, design and drive, it has actually exceeded my expectations in all categories.” On a recenttrip to Hong Kong, Michael took advantage ofone ofthe special services Brian Jessel BMW offers customers. En route to YVR, Michael dropped off his 550xi atthe Boundary Road dealership after-hours with the on-site securityguard. Inside the car, Michael lefta note written to the service department detailing his return date. He then took a taxi to YVR to catch his flight. Ten days later, the service department emailed Michael in Hong Kong to confirm his returning time to YVR.

When Michael arrived home to the airport, his 550xi was waiting with the airportvalet, serviced and detailed. “I had been away from my car for a while,” he recalls, “and I remember walking up to the 550xi at the airport and actually smiling at the car. I was admiring it all over again, and excited about getting back behind the wheel. I thought, I am really fortunate to drive this car.”

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