The project Park Lane offers brand-new buildings and nothing is set in stone just yet. Every individual building has its own architectural design. And there are lay-outs and plans for every unit. Still, there’s a lot of things that the buyers can choose or adapt to their own wishes and preferences. But where to start? Caroline Melis works as a Customer Service Coordinator for Extensa and helps the future residents of Park Lane with every step of this particular journey.
Hello Caroline! First of all: tell us a bit about your job. How did you come to be a Customer Service Consultant in the first place?
Caroline Melis: “I’ve studied Interior Architecture and Real Estate Law, and I first became acquainted with Extensa about 3 years ago. They were looking to extend their Customer Service Department and it seemed like a great opportunity, so I took the leap.”
And what does your job with Extensa entail these days?
Caroline: “Most of my time I’m assisting our clients during the selection process of the different materials for their new apartment. If necessary I’ll help them to see where the plans can be altered, which I also need to check with both the architects and engineers who are involved with the project. This can truly be anything … From the lay-out of an apartment, to the placement of the walls, the doors, the technology which is used and integrated and the materials in all spaces of the living unit. Later, I’ll have to inspect the building site to check if the requested alterations have been executed correctly and according the new plans.”
That ‘ll keep you on your feet! How do you approach your meetings with new clients?
Caroline: “I always let the clients tell their story and express their ideas first. I need to discover what kind of people they are. Do they feel the need to match their new property completely to their taste? And what is the result they have in mind. Then it’s my turn to advise them on the next steps.”
Isn’t it challenging to keep your own preferences and sense of style out of the equation?
Caroline: “Yes, I need to be aware of that but that’s part of my competences after all those years. Of course, there are structural limitations we have to respect. But I must say most clients actually stick to the original plan. They can still change some materials, colours and looks to their desire, but most people don’t ask for structural changes… Some changes involve the adaptation of doors from wood to glass to allow more daylight. Sometimes they switch a bath tub for a shower, or the other way around. Lot’s of clients ask for more plugs or light spots. It’s all about what the client desires and how he will live in his future apartment I also see a difference in profiles of clients. An investor for example, will generally stick to the original proposal whether an end user, will really look into every detail.
And how does it make you feel when you get to help a client in realizing a dream?
Caroline: “Amazing. Recently I definitely had to go the extra mile to translate the wishes of two of my clients into realistic plans. When I found a way, they were absolutely elated. One of them has even told me we need to grab a celebratory cup of coffee! (laughs). It’s precisely why I love to be part of this project. I truly enjoy the contact with the clients, colleagues, contractors and suppliers. No two days are the same. And it always gives me a kick when I get to turn a client’s wish into reality. If they are happy and satisfied, so do I.”