In answering the big question “Who are you buying from when you buy a Kardiel” I think there is a lot of background necessary to answer this question. My personal story with the company begins with my relocation to Seattle a few years back. I was just starting my photography business and wanted to bring about an entirely new portfolio. One of my friends was the manager at Kardiel and she asked the owners if they’d let me do a shoot in their showroom. Having not known me but in trusting her, they let me do a whole-day operation with complete freedom. Fast forwarding about a year later, I was working for a manufacturing company that was rumored to be sold and wiped clean. Fearing this circumstance and being in my second trimester of my pregnancy, I told my friend about my new situation. Coincidentally, there seemed to be a need for a salesperson at Kardiel.
At my interview with the manager and owners for the sales position, I was very upfront with my concerns over the many upcoming doctor’s appointments and most-obvious maternity leave I would need. I will always remember their answer –
“We would never NOT hire someone because they are pregnant.”
As a woman and soon-to-be-mother, this spoke volumes for the company and the people I’d be working for. Surely, training a new employee is a risky investment, and training a pregnant employee is an even riskier one.
This feeling of trust and faith with Kardiel continued on throughout the year. They were beyond supportive during my maternity leave, when my household was impacted by the government shutdown, when my grandmother died, and when my house sold THREE times (for which I thought I’d be a stay-at-home mom, but every deal backed out). Besides being there for me in moments of life when it is the hardest, Kardiel has provided emotional support for me personally. They have taken the time to communicate and develop a relationship with me and my family that is outside of the workplace. I believe that this work-culture of being truly part of the Kardiel family is the reason as to why I have loved working for the company so much. I’ll be honest – I have a background that is the furthest from mid-century modern furniture. But even though I hadn’t been working in my intended field, I still enjoyed many things about my job because of who I was working with and for.
When visiting Kardiel.com, customers instantly assume that this is a large corporation that functions like Amazon. The answer to this myth is a flatout “no”. Kardiel is small family-owned business. Just like most small businesses, the company must be smart to stay alive and in the game. This means that Kardiel can’t afford to ship your 300 lbs sectional back to the warehouse for free (it cost over $1,000 just to get it to you!). It also means that they don’t have 24 hour customer support. (There are less than 10 people that even have a phone line and all have families and need sleep). Furthermore, Kardiel relies on its consumers to have some responsibility. Read the emails and conditions that are sent to you – it’s all important because shipping a sofa across country is not a joke!
Ultimately, I hope that some of this perspective from the inside helps show my appreciation for my former employer and for any customers who want to know what their money is going towards. When you buy a Kardiel, you are supporting not only the business but the Kardiel family, as small as it is. Kardiel shows lots of promise in the expansion that I have witnessed in the past year. In the time that I was with them, the owners have made significant changes to improve where they are weakest and to offer more for their customers. In the years to come, I wouldn’t be surprised if the name Kardiel became as well known as Article or Joybird.
In closing, it takes a company with backbone to support an employee who tells them they are leaving to pursue other things. Kardiel has been more than flexible – they’ve allowed me to work remotely from multiple locations, listened to me as my circumstances continued to change over the year, and have understood my urge to get back to science. If the day comes where I would like to return to a career with them, I feel comforted knowing they’d take me back with open arms.
Written by Yours Truly,
Hi there! I am the creator of the post that you’ve just seen. To give you some background, I am a photographer located in the Orlando, FL area. I am also a self-taught makeup-artist, blogger, and have a background in primatology & conservation.
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