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Testimonial part 1 - WhiteFlash

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DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
Background
My search began in Feb 2002 as most people's do, visiting every local B&M. Knowing nothing, I set my sights at a 2ct G VS2 stone, and priced everyone in Houston. They all claimed to have the perfect stone, but after hearing such different quotes, I decided I needed an education. And so I found DiamondTalk and PriceScope. I spent months reading and learning, as well as price browsing and kept a detailed spreadsheet of price stats for nearly a year (literally thousands of entries).

WhiteFlash
In November I decided I was ready to search for my stone. At that point, with my newfound knowledge, I decided my budget allowed for a 1.7 H SI1 branded H&A, and felt that WhiteFlash was going to be my best bet. Without ever even talking to them, based on all of the information gleened here, I had made up my mind to buy my stone from them. The transition from investigation to negotiation lost WhiteFlash my business. Although I will gloss over details, and haven't mentioned this to WhiteFlash before now, I will state here that I was driven away from them specifically because of Lesley's sales techniques. I was put off, ignored, made to feel that I was intruding on Lesley's busy day, lied to, and pressured with used-car salesmanship. In the end, although I liked Brian and his stones, I did not trust Lesley. I moved on to investigate non-branded stones.
 

LesleyH

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 28, 2000
Messages
506
DieHardSearcher:

This post is quite unexpected specifically since:

1. We have over 50 e-mails in your history with very specific and specialized content. We got back to you promptly whenever you called or e-mailed. When we are extremely busy, we do sometimes have to ask customers to wait a short while for responses
2. We worked very hard to get you to your price point while trying to make sure that you could purchase the beautiful A CUT ABOVE diamond you wanted.
3. We did have another customer very interested in the diamond, so I was not using "used-car sales techniques" when I explained that we would only be able to hold the stone at the agreed upon price for a short period of time.
4. When you were finally ready to move forward with the purchase, it was sold - A 1.70 A CUT ABOVE is not going to be available indefinitely.

Whiteflash works very hard to provide stellar customer service and myself and our wonderful staff work long hours to make that happen. I'll end off with a quote from an e-mail that you sent us during the process:

"Thank you very much for your immediate responses. I can't tell you how nice it is to do business with you. I will let you know shortly of my decision, but be assured that even if I choose the other candidate stone I am
considering, I will surely begin with Whiteflash on future searches."

LesleyH
www.whiteflash.com
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
Lesley,

As I read your comments I realized I was remiss in not including the positives of my experience with WhiteFlash.

1. WhiteFlash did work with me on my price point. I do not know how much negotiation is normal practice within this industry, but WhiteFlash did indeed attempt to help.

2. I spent a total of 3 hours with Brian. This time was spent discussing 2 specific stones as well as general discussions about diamonds and his process. This time was most enjoyable, and a service I would not have received elsewhere.

----------------------------------------------------------------

During negotiations, I did indeed commend you. During my review, I will state how I really felt.

I was never 'finally ready to move forward'. You may have misunderstood my negotiating attempts. How long do you consider indefinately? Would you like to provide the facts on when the stone went on the market, when I first indicated interest, and when it sold?

I will tell you that my mind was definitely made up not to do business with you, but to use your inventory as my price comparison when your email stated:

"If you call in the next hour and place your order, the price will be $xxxx. Thereafter it will revert back to its full list price of $xxxxx - as I said before, there has been alot interest expressed by numerous customers and if you don't want it, then there is another customer considering it"

The stone sold 1-2 months after this, how often do threats work against someone attempting to give you money?
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
As I reread my posts, I wanted to make my position clear. I won't risk putting my foot in my mouth further after this.

I think WhiteFlash provides tremendous service, a tremendous product, at a tremendous price. I believe I have recommended them many times, and would continue to do so for these reasons. I doubt you could find anyone that has purchased a stone from them who now regrets it. As for branded stones, WhiteFlash was and still would be my preference.

I chose not to do business with them because of my personal dislike for the sales techniques. If perspective consumers are ok with dealing with that portion of the process, then by all means, do not let me dissuade you from doing business with WhiteFlash. You won't be disappointed.
 

flowerpower

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 9, 2003
Messages
65
Sorry for hijacking your thread, Diamondsearcher.

Lesley:
I'm from Singapore and I sent you an email on 18 March about buying two ACA diamonds from you to make earrings, but I didn't receive a reply. I sent a follow-up email to you more than a week ago (on 31 March), with my earlier email attached, but I still haven't heard back from you. I don't mean to imply that you've been ignoring me or anything but I'm just worried that maybe my emails are not getting to you because of a filter or server problem. Could you please check and private msg me or something? Thanks.
 

LesleyH

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 28, 2000
Messages
506
Hi!

I am so pleased that you posted here. I have e-mailed you twice and both of them have come back. I figured it must be a filter on your e-mail or the likes. I have received your e-mails. Please PM or e-mail me with a phone # or an alternate e-mail address.

LesleyH
www.whiteflash.com
 

bkelly

Rough_Rock
Joined
Mar 20, 2003
Messages
1
In defense of Whiteflash, I purchased a diamond approximately 3 weeks ago from them through Denise Newberg. I knew what I wanted, gave them the specs, and they found three diamonds in that range. I told them what I was willing to spend, they met the price range. The ring was overnighted and I couldn't have been happier. All this was in less than a week. I'd recommend them to anyone.
 

Iceman

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 25, 2000
Messages
1,374
50 emails ? 3 hours on the phone ???? On a perfectly cut diamond ???? What's to
talk about ? What's to email?

When diamonds are cut that perfect and graded by the best lab ? What's the
beef???? I would have done the same thing just to get you off the phone and
commit to something.
Yes, its a lot of money, but did you spend that long with a competitor ? Or did
White Flash give you so much information you used it elsewhere ?

If you were dealing with an average cut diamond , I could see where you needed to
go through the inventory and weed out the bad ones. But in this case your the one
with the problem.

Yes, Im defending WhiteFlash. Ive had customers like that if they had a choice of
two pairs of black socks they could not pick a pair out.

Whiteflash is a top notch store , yes I compete against them and your complaints are
unjust.
 

Iceman

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 25, 2000
Messages
1,374
Just wanting to know did you do all this searching on company time?
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
Iceman,

I've read your rants quite enough.
- 50 emails = When you have to re-send your requests multiple times, it adds up to 50 pretty quickly. See flowerpower's post above. Lesley's 50 number is quite an exaggeration though.
- 3 hours on the phone = 3 hours talking with Brian in person at Alpha. We discussed the 2 stones I was looking at in detail, discussed diamonds in general, the industry, the weather, his background, etc. If you read above, I have commended them many times for this.
- What's the beef? = I believe I have already made my claim. My complaints are just, and consumers read them and take notice.
- Used information elsewhere = Of course I did. I gave WhiteFlash their opportunity.
- Searching on company time = You seem to spend alot of time on this board as well. Are you doing it on company time too? What makes you think my company time is any different than yours?
 

flowerpower

Rough_Rock
Joined
Feb 9, 2003
Messages
65
Thanks Lesley, I've PM-ed you. This email problem is most mysterious. Anyway, I look forward to hearing from you!
 

Iceman

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 25, 2000
Messages
1,374
Company time ~ I guess that's a yes. Me , I own this multmillion dollar diamond business , that's my luxury.

Because if I had an Employee that I was paying $$$$ to do other work then what he is being paid for I would have him or her
out the door.

Hey! It was an honest review of a consumer. I thought it was quite accurate. No rants just the way we all observe it.

White Flash is a great company and I felt you were unjust.
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
Thank you for both your personal remarks as well as those about a negotiation of which you were not involved. I see how that helps other customers make their judgements.

Since you do not seem to pick up on basic hints, for your information, my time is free. But to ease your mind, you would not get the opportunity to have me as an employee nor a customer. Maybe you cannot get the gist of why I moved on from WhiteFlash. I will use my dollars as a statement, my experience with WhiteFlash cost them my dollars, and I will not be giving any to you.

Now please reply and boast some more about how you do not need my money. At the same time, post pictures of yourself in your prime, that certainly benefits PriceScope.


I am also sure that Lesley and WhiteFlash appreciate you keeping this thread alive.
 

SacTownRico

Rough_Rock
Joined
Apr 9, 2003
Messages
1
Searcher -- Thanks for sharing your experience with Whiteflash. With all the diamond sites out there, it is good to hear first-hand experiences, good and bad. I would like to know what company Iceman operates. Since he apparently has no qualms about alienating potential customers, I certainly would like to avoid spending my hard earned cash with him too. Presently, I am still trying to narrow my search for that perfect stone and have yet to make contact with any of the companies referred to on this forum. I was surprised to learn from your earlier post that price is negotiable with Whiteflash. Would you mind sharing what basis was used for negotiation. Do you have some inside knowledge of fair pricing, or was it perhaps a matter of comparison with other online prices? The impression I had was that the prices listed were pretty much rock bottom with very little profit margin (obviously, judging by Iceman's boast, not all are barely getting by
). And to think that I would have probably just been glad to have gotten a beter deal than the mall shops. Love the power of knowledge. Thanks for sharing, and lotsa luck with the search.

Rico
 

Mara

Super_Ideal_Rock
Joined
Oct 30, 2002
Messages
31,003
Most online co's will offer some sort of pricing negotiation though some of them will not. Most of the pricing IS very competitive online, esp since alot of times they are all using the same virtual diamond inventory and therefore need to be the cheapest in order to catch the eyeballs. But even eStores that own their own inventory need to be competitive with other eStores.

WhiteFlash (and other vendors) will try to work with you depending on your budget, I have heard this from other posters as well...so why not try to ask? Regardless of the company you are working with, its my opinion that a savvy buyer will ask if the price is firm and also respect the company who says they cannot go any lower.

Good luck, regardless of who you decide to use!
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
SacTownRico,

My own process was to track prices for a year. I felt fairly comfortable that I could come pretty close to gauging what a stone was selling for. I began my diamond search very early, 'hoping' I would need one at some point, so I had the time to do this.

I think Mara's reply was dead on, and I ask for a better price, trade, or options on just about everything but groceries. It really does not hurt, and you wouldn't believe how many deals can be done that are beneficial both ways.

My assumption is that it may be a case by case basis. The WhiteFlash A Cut Above stone I was looking at was on the market for many months. This may have attributed to their willingness to lower the price. They certainly want to keep their inventory fluid. Diamonds on the shelf are costing them serious money in investment capital, insurance, etc. That is why I indicated interest in that stone to begin with.
 

pricescope

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Dec 31, 1999
Messages
8,266
DiehardSearcher,

I always appreciate posting honest opinions/experiences on the forum.

Could you please tell why you decided posting your experience now, in April, when the whole story happened at the end of last year?
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
I chose to post my buying experience all at once after my ring was purchased. I chose not to do business with WhiteFlash, but until the ring was in my hands nothing is for certain.

I wish I had realized that the length limit was just an issue with the 'Preview' and not the post itself, otherwise I would have kept all 3 items (WhiteFlash, GoodOldGold, and David Atlas) together. I really did not want to start a never-ending thread about WhiteFlash, I just wanted it posted for people looking for an honest review.
 

Iceman

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 25, 2000
Messages
1,374
Rico~


Try to read the 100's of positive posts about White Flash !

You also see Im not on the lunch line here, so you will get the straight talk form me.

Also your money is not any better then everybody else's , and if I give you the
impression I don't want your business your probably right. If Im ready for a
headache I will take one off the internet. But 98% of our business is referral only ,
our shipping log last month was as far away as Sweden to Hawaii. Im on here to
help people and kill some time between customers.

One more thing on here , choose your friends wisely.

Also disparaging remarks end up in court some times
 

pqcollectibles

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 22, 2003
Messages
3,441
Hi DieHard


I had a wonderful experience with White Flash and the relationship has continued since my purchase.

I did not experience any "high pressure", "used car" sales tactics from Lesley. BUT,... There may not have been another buyer immediately interested in the same diamond I was. Lesley's approach was always "when YOU are ready" and never "I have to know now!" Lesley worked with my price point and got me a much nicer pendant than I ever dreamed possible!

You and I may be somewhat different types of customers. I am not the kind of person who needs my "hand held" to complete a purchase. If I called the office with a general question and Lesley was busy, I just asked Judi or Denise or whoever answered the phone. One of my calls was related to shipping and Lesley was on a business trip. Lisa, in shipping, answered my question, and gave me the info I needed. Lesley called later, ON HER BUSINESS TRIP to confirm I had everything I needed. Because Lesley and the folks at White Flash keep copious notes on every customer, my question was always answered, Lesley always knew I called, what was discussed, and followed up with me. Sometimes, I got email from her at 11
0 pm and later CDT. Lesley even knew what Brian Gavin and I had discussed before my phone call could be transferred back to her! Yes, Lesley is busy, but... Lesley is also a very warm, friendly, polite, and professional person. Lesley Harris is a true asset to White Flash customers and ANY company would be VERY privileged to have her on their sales team!

Since I bought from White Flash, I have contacted Diamond Bob for further info on some of his responses to posts in threads. One was a Saturday post I read and PM'd him. To my surprise he wrote me back late Sunday. I talked with Lesley about their trip to Vegas both before she left and since she returned home. All the folks at White Flash have continued to be interested in me as a person. To me, that speaks VOLUMES about both the people and the company.

I am sorry for you DieHard, that you felt you were "slighted" in your experience with White Flash. From what I have read in this thread, both from your copy and Lesley's, I feel you were dealt with honestly and fairly. Lesley told you other buyers were interested. There's a whole spectrum of reasons the diamond may not have sold at that particular time. From what I've read, you were the one who did not act in good faith. You said, "I was never 'finally ready to move forward'. You may have misunderstood my negotiating attempts. How long do you consider indefinately?......I will tell you that my mind was definitely made up not to do business with you, but to use your inventory as my price comparison....." It seems to me that you took time from other customers and "price shopped" White Flash as a basis for negotiating elsewhere.

Just $0.02 worth from a VERY SATISFIED White Flash customer!!!
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
"You also see Im not on the lunch line here, so you will get the straight talk form me."

No, we do not see that. Please tell us exactly where you work. For all we know, you very well might work for WhiteFlash.


"Also disparaging remarks end up in court some times"
This certainly appears to be a threat of some sort. I am sure that Leonid appreciates you threatening honest consumers and reviewers from posting their experiences here.

I am also quite sure that Lesley appreciates you once again keeping this thread alive. You are truly a gem.
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
pqcollectibles,

I am pleased to hear that you had such a nice transaction with WhiteFlash. If you would actually read my entire post, I could just as easily have given my review a "thumbs up", rather than a "thumbs down".

Hand holding? I sat in Brian Gavin's office on 2 visits to chat and look at his diamonds (and have commended them many times now for this). I may have been more interested in the specifics of my diamond than you, that is not hand-holding, it is due diligence. Diamonds are not built on an assembly line, there are differences. After that, there were no more questions other than price negotiations and what types of settings they had to offer. How is this considered hand holding?

You used someone/somewhere as a price point. Don't be silly in stating that I wasted anyone's time by shopping around. Did you visit any malls to peruse their diamonds during your search, knowing full well you would not buy one?

The stone in question was on the market for many many months (both before I ever indicated interest and after). The sales tactics used, when the diamond quite obviously to me did not have the level of interest as most other diamonds I had looked in to, were not appropriate. You can't discount that.

I'm glad you purchased something you are pleased with.
 

LesleyH

Brilliant_Rock
Joined
Aug 28, 2000
Messages
506
Diehard:

No, Iceman does not work for us. We are competitors.

No problem with this coming up again - I am sure the average educated consumer can read between the lines. There are always going to be one or two negative comments amongst the hundreds of wonderful ones.

LesleyH
www.whiteflash.com
 

DiehardSearcher

Rough_Rock
Joined
May 27, 2002
Messages
94
Lesley,

Unfortunately, the average consumer is not educated. That is why this forum is here.
I wish you and your business well.
 

homer_j

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Mar 31, 2003
Messages
234
Once again a nasty little thread has been revived. Unfortunately, I too, cannot resist.

If you were resourceful enough you could easily find more information on the iceman. Based on what I know, he seems quite reputable and doesn't seem to have any affiliation with Whiteflash other than a friendly competitive relationship. I can't blame him for wanting to get back in on this, it's hard to resist. But threatening, I don't think so. Rather more of a suggestion about posting accusations or allegations. I don't know that you did this regarding whiteflash, but I guess the general rule for all of us should be to just post the facts of our experience and the rest of us can discern our own opinion. Thanks for sharing your experience, if I ever choose to do business with them it will be considered, but may get overshadowed by the numerous positive testimonials. But ultimately, it would be my personal experience that seals a deal, not anybody else's. I get the impression that's what you think as well and were trying to say.
 

jlim

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Apr 29, 2003
Messages
250
----------------
On 6/12/2003 11:18:59 AM LesleyH wrote:
No problem with this coming up again - I am sure the average educated consumer can read between the lines. There are always going to be one or two negative comments amongst the hundreds of wonderful ones.

LesleyH
www.whiteflash.com
----------------
Lesley - fortunately in the case of WhiteFlash, you don't really find too many negatives. Using google to search, I didn't come up with anything negative the last time I check. Unlike one of your other competitor whose name keep popping up more and more frequently


On the other hand, I do find iceman rather arrogant in his postings esp. when I read this.

******************************
Which brings up another point about one of your last statements. Why do you think your money is worth more then others ? Why do you think I would want your business so you could run me through the ringer like you did whiteflash?
No thanks If you have notices Im not on the lunch line here , when I get a pm for a diamond request here I delete it. I feel people like yourself that are bottom feeders are not return customers . On the other hand friends I make on this forum, I give out better deals then one can imagine
******************************

As a vendor, I would definitely not say (even if I feel the same way) what iceman said. But I'm sure he's so well off in his business and he doesn't really care about the bottom feeders customers who is looking just to get the best deal.
 

pqcollectibles

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Feb 22, 2003
Messages
3,441
----------------
On 6/12/2003 11:18:29 AM DiehardSearcher wrote:

pqcollectibles,

........If you would actually read my entire post, I could just as easily have given my review a "thumbs up", rather than a "thumbs down".

-----------------------------------------------------------------

I can read and comprehend very well, Thank You Very Much! I read your entire post. Your "complimentary" statements were laced with disgust.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

Hand holding? I sat in Brian Gavin's office on 2 visits to chat and look at his diamonds (and have commended them many times now for this). I may have been more interested in the specifics of my diamond than you, that is not hand-holding, it is due diligence. Diamonds are not built on an assembly line, there are differences. After that, there were no more questions other than price negotiations and what types of settings they had to offer. How is this considered hand holding?

You used someone/somewhere as a price point. Don't be silly in stating that I wasted anyone's time by shopping around. Did you visit any malls to peruse their diamonds during your search, knowing full well you would not buy one?

----------------
Yes I did shop diamonds prior to making my purchase. Most of my time was spent looking at color and clarity levels, and sizing carat weights. I "browsed" for the most part and only involved sales people when necessary to look at a particular diamond or get specifics. If the sales people were busy with other customers, or other customers were in the stores/shops, I WAITED. I did not take any sales person's time away from a REAL potential customer. I also attend "Loose Diamond Events" and Shows where there would be lots of customers and lots of sales people. That way I could AVOID being the focus of a sales person while I looked. During my "shopping" trips, prices were quoted to me. But, I also used the telephone to call area B&M's for diamond availability in my color and carat range. If the vendor didn't have anything that I was looking for, I only took 30 seconds to a minute of their time. If they did have a diamond similar to what I was looking for, I took maybe 2 to 3 minutes to get specs and a price. Even though every one offered to get diamonds in for me, I declined. I knew they couldn't match PS prices, I wouldn't purchase from them, and did not want to put them to the effort and expense for nothing. I visited the TWO B&M's that said they had a diamond similar to what I was looking for. The time with the sales person was less than 10 minutes each time. The diamonds were not what I was looking for. I did most of my price comparison work right here on Price Scope and at the various vendors' websites. I did call a few other PS vendors. Each generated a list for me and sent it email. I spent a great deal of time with the lists and Cut Charts before I selected diamonds to consider. I only asked 2 vendors for copies of Certs with inclusions plots, and Sarin info because only 2 out of the lists of diamonds interested me. I came back to PS, used the HCA and Price Stats, and found that neither one was a good choice. I shopped effectively without eating 3 hours of any one person's time, or sending/receiving tons of emails in all my contacts.


Were I not truly discerning in the specifics of the diamond I purchased, I would not have sought out Price Scope and spent time lurking, learning, then registering, and posting a couple diamonds for people's opinions. I researched diamond information and vendors by searching old threads. I also took the time and effort to compare TWO ACA diamonds side by side, and had both independently verified before making my final decision. I did not go out and buy a crap diamond for an outrageous price and then ask fellow PS Members, "What do you think? How did I do?" Richard Sherwood did a DiamCalc on the diamond I bought for another person prior to my purchase. The simulated pic was FANTASTIC, the scores were GREAT, and Mr. Sherwood commented the the diamond was "very, very nice". High praise from one of our more respected experts.

After one of my posts, I had a vendor email me about one of their diamonds which "they" offered to put on hold for me. That contact was totally out of line with PS policies. Yet I have never revealed who the vendor was. If I had slung the mud, who would have gotten dirty? Happy, satisfied customers, competitors, and appraisers would jump to defend their vendor, client, and fellow competitor. I could type the intuitively obvious question here, but you should know it without having it written.
 

fire&ice

Ideal_Rock
Joined
Jul 22, 2002
Messages
7,828
This thread brings up a point of observation. I have noticed that if someone is not satisfied with a particular vendor, they will catch heat for posting such. Everyone has an opinion. I would like to hear all sides of a story.

I have no qualms with Diehardsearcher's testimony. He named a specific problem *he* had with a vendor. There's always two sides to every story. I can formulate my own opinion from gleaned information.

That said, Diehard's type of non glowing review is necessary for this forum to be credible. He did not suppose or in any way have a "leap of faith" to call into question every thing about a particular vendor - as did the "H" man.

In a perfect world *everyone* would be happy with *every* vendor they worked with. Unfortunately, we are all human. Some consumer/vendor fits are just more productive for their personalities.

As for time spent w/ a vendor, any vendor would know it is the cost of doing business. Sometimes it pays off - sometimes it doesn't. That said, most vendors can gage interest. It is *their* choice as to how much time they spend w/ a prospective client.

Just my 2c, since this thread has been resurrected.
 

trichrome

Shiny_Rock
Joined
Dec 9, 2002
Messages
397
Iceman,

I don't like the way you're talking to this customer..
If you have plenty of customers & you don't feel the
need or the time to explain to one special customer,
you don't deserve respect from your customers.
Your attitude is rude man. And you know what? As a customer &
business partner I will never want to do business with someone
like you.

Trichrome.
 
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