Perhaps I should have clarified one statement in my previous posting. I
said that the technician often recommends me, but went on to say that I
seldom, if ever, actually speak to the technician.
Here's what typically happens. The piano develops a problem. The owner
contacts the technician/rebuilder, who in turn recommends me. Then the
owner contacts me to set up an appointment, and tells me that I have
been recommended by the technician.
On rare occasions (and I mean _rare_), the technician will contact me
and explain the situation. And, while I will certainly bear this in
mind when I examine the piano, I am much more concerned about the
owner's point of view because he's the person who paid the money to get
the job done.
Once in a blue moon (an even rarer occasion), a technician or store
owner will attempt to hire me to correct a problem. I say "attempt"
because I will not work for another technician or a store as a sub-
contractor. Early in my career, I learned that hiring myself out to
others in the industry meant that I was obligated to do only what the
boss directed me to do. This often meant concealing the truth about the
actual condition of an instrument. So I adopted the policy of working
only directly for the customer. Then there is no possible conflict of
Lastly, another way that work finds me is through recommendations from
technicians and store owners who are not affiliated with the technician
who worked on the piano. In such cases, the technician/rebuilder has
usually been informed of the problem but has failed to (or elected not
to) attend to it in a timely manner. So the customer reaches out to
others, who in turn recommend me. When I find myself involved in such a
case, I clearly have no obligation to contact the technician before
submitting my report to the owner. However, in all of the other cases,
things don't seem so black-or-white, which is why I asked the initial
question: Do I have any obligation to contact the technician before
submitting my written report to the customer?
John A. Tuttle