Do you Allow your Customer to Profit from your Dreams?

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Do not let the past hold you back from your Future

Do you Allow your Customers to Profit from your Dreams?

Why do customers act and react in an unusual or unique way to your proposal and solutions. What turns them off and tunes them out? How can you best understand customer behaviors; expectations, and standards? How you can affect and often times alter the customer’s behavior during the service call. The first thing that is essential is to take responsibility and ownership of the service call. Stop playing the blame game. When you play the blame game nobody wins. This means it is time to stop blaming your customer for your lousy sales skill and ability to pass information that will lead a customer to the best possible choice. That best choice is too use you today and in the future.

I read many sales blogs and articles, visit many internet construction trade sites, plus speak to many professionals in the construction trades. I find construction service technicians, owners, and sales trainers blame customers for their behavior. The trainers seem to perpetuate the myth that customers are liars and have this goal to give a sales service technician a difficult time. It does not surprise me when these same technicians start complaining about all their difficult and demanding customers. I am surprised they have success with any of their customers.

My first question too many of these professionals are: why? Why is the customer so difficult? I will put this disclaimer out there; you will run into a difficult customer from time to time. However the never ending flow of this type customer that you service is a fantastic indication that your philosophy and strategy necessitates critical and fundamental modifications that set customer expectations and standards.

The customer does not and will not trust or respect you and your solutions. Now it is time to take a long intense look at whatever you are delivering to your customer. Discover why they do not respect or trust you. The logical place to start is with the information. Is the information true and believable? You are the professional and the expert and that should lead me to a conclusion that the information is correct. If the information is incorrect and you are manipulating or taking unfair advantage of your customer nothing short of a complete behavior and philosophical transformation will help you overcome this horrible character flaw that you are a dirt bag.

When the information is correct the next hypothesis is it is your personality. Yours and the customer’s personality are not functioning properly together. Remember this, not every customer will like you. Likeability is a factor however trust and respect is a superior factor. It is impossible to be well liked by every person you come in contact with. The service call will become easier when the likability factor is present however it is not necessary. Your professionalism should never be influenced whether a customer likes or dislikes you.

Could the customer be having a bad day? Absolutely they have you visiting their home. They do not want you to be in their home. There are a myriad of unknowns that the customer faces. Many of your customers have never set up a budget for home repairs. No one has ever discussed setting up a repair budget with the homeowner. This places stress towards any expendable money the customer has available to him or her. They may have an idea of what they would like to spend however they do not know exactly how much it will cost.

The second area that is contributing to the bad day is the problem they are experiencing. Typically the problem did not occur that day and often times is a few weeks old or older. This informs you that the customer has someone else on their back to get it taken care of and do it today. Frequently this is more pressing then the actual problem. Add to this that many families have Mom and Dad both working full time jobs to support the family. Someone has to make a choice to disregard their professional duties to wait for you, then wait to get the job taken care of and if time is left get back to work. The customer is losing time and money then on top of that has to pay you.

I have been in plumbing since 1972 and I have never once had a customer call me only to have a plan in place to give me a difficult time and not take care of the issue they are experiencing. I doubt that you can say anything different. You may think the customer is wasting your time however they are just like you when you need something done. They want to take care of some of the uncertainty. Know and understand this and you will be better prepared.

There is one logical reason why the customer is difficult and that is a problem with communication. Perhaps you used technical terminology with the customer and spoke over their head or totally disengaged them from the discussion. The customer can become indifferent due to losing interest with what you have to say. The old adage is very true; it is not what you say but how you say it.

Another colossal area where many service technicians fail within the boundaries of communication is with the presentation. You already know and understand what the issue is and you are excited to take care of that issue. You immediately address the issue and you forget to take the time to talk with your customer. When you fail to talk with the customer you neglect to listen to their questions and concerns. You do not hear the real content and context of the problem the customer is experiencing. A core belief I have is every customer is searching for a different experience. Otherwise the person that serviced them last would be back in their home.

This has a great deal to do with the 3rd area of concern and that is with the customer experience. How do your customers react to your service? Recently I had the opportunity to listen to Tom Connellan a well-respected and trusted authority and advisor advising companies to excel and go above and beyond to deliver exceptional customer experiences. What he stated was do you really want customers to be satisfied? Satisfaction at its basic level is ok you did that ok, nothing special on your end. When you excel in this area you will increase your opportunities for repeat business building relationships that can withstand mistakes. You are human and will make blunders. It is what you do with your slipups that separate you from your competition. Take ownership, do what is right, and do it quickly.

Three areas to research and immediately change within your company and receive amazing results are with communication, presentation and the customer experience. What you will find will be startling. You will experience and discover fantastic customers that will change the way you perceive your job. Your job will shift from a job to a fun fulfilling remarkable adventure that will go far above and beyond satisfaction. It will have you saying glad I did versus ooops with what just happened and dreading your day and customers. Your customers will say glad I did versus I should not have done that.

Set your customer expectation and standards by including your customer in a conversation communicating in terminology that is easily understood and compels the customer to act in their best interest. Incorporate this today as a best practice in your business and look forward to your customer interactions.


About practicebetterbusiness

Author of Outside the Business Box: All about Sales Build a better you and increase your earning potential

Posted on May 19, 2013, in electrical sales, How to sell HVAC, How to sell plumbing, HVAC sales, plumbing sales,, Selling HVAC, Selling Plumbing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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