Tom Piscitelli's T.R.U.S.T.

Sales Byte®

Do You Have the Courage to Stand Your Ground?

One of the most rewarding aspects of my work is to receive feedback like this from Matt Lee of Green Air in Ashland, VA, a York and Climatemaster Dealer and a recent graduate of a Sales Coach training workshop sponsored by Virginia Air.

Hi Tom, since our Sales Coach training two months ago things have been going really well. Had a couple of upsells that I was really excited about and then yesterday was the best. I had a customer send me an email about three weeks ago and said he intended to proceed with me on a job. But after that I found out that he had another guy coming out to give him a proposal (which was the fourth) and the new guy gave him a lower price than we did by about $1,500. The customer told me that the other guy didn’t have the PM included and if I could take that off and then lower the price even more then he would feel comfortable with that. I thought to myself “What would Tom do?”. Here is what I emailed back to him:

Please see the new proposals. I took the preventative maintenance agreements out but I am unable to move on any of the other pricing. We are a reputable company that does not cut corners to win business. If we cut corners then our installation work looks like everyone else’s and that is not our goal. Our installers are NATE Certified with Master’s Licenses to provide you with the best installations possible with no call-backs. We also provide 24/7 service so if you have an emergency at 3:00 AM we make contact with you within the hour. Look on Angie’s List and BBB to see what you are receiving from us with your investment. I hope that you can see the benefits to using Green Air and you choose not to base your decision on price alone.

He called me the next morning and told me that he had spoken with his wife and they were 100% ready to move forward with our company. He said to bring the proposal so he can sign it. I immediately called my wife with excitement. Thank you very much for your class it has brought a whole new mind set to my selling process.

PS: I forgot to tell you also in the conversation he apologized to me and said he didn’t mean to act like a jerk. Also, in the email I sent him a copy of the iceberg!! Your stuff ACTUALLY works…who knew???? HAHA

Give full credit to Matt for believing in himself and his company and standing his ground in the face of lower-priced, lower-value competition.

Well done, Matt!

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Take Credit for the Things You Do

Too often I see contractor’s replacement equipment proposals being more of a specification sheet listing the major equipment and warranties that are included in the quoted price. This puts the value on the equipment and warranties, and not your company.  So when the homeowners are comparing your proposal with others, all they can do is compare your equipment and your price to their equipment and their price.  So given nothing else is different, they will tend to gravitate to the lowest price. 

We know that the equipment does not install itself and take care of itself in the future.  There is a lot involved in providing a high-quality installation and delivering excellent ongoing service.  Does the typical customer naturally know this?  Not unless we tell them!  We make significant investments in our capabilities and if we don’t let our potential clients know about them and our completion does, who typically gets the credit?

Tom teaches that this is analogous to an iceberg.  What the potential customer typically sees is the part exposed above water.  Is simply telling them during your presentation what’s below the water enough, especially when they are comparing “bids” during their decision-making process?  To achieve the full value of everything your company does to provide a quality installation and ongoing service, it has to be included in your written proposal.  Writing it down when your competition does not, gives you the credit for it and creates doubt and suspicion about your foes… even if they are providing the same level of installation and service.

So if you are using a hand written proposal, have a section that lists all your iceberg items that can be checked and discussed with the client. 

If you are using an electronic printed or emailed proposal system like TRUST PRO® online offers, iceberg items are automatically included in detail and customized based on how you have set up your Client CHOICES®.  So that all this critical buying information is automatically included each and every time without typing or writing a thing.  No excuse for not taking all the credit!

These and many more sales closing rate and lead source tracking features are seamlessly built into TRUST PRO® online.  For more information and a free demo of how to use TRUST PRO® online on a tablet in the home log onto

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Do You Have Commitment Issues?

I would ask all technicians to commit to fully serving your clients, by not just repairing their old inefficient equipment but by giving your clients the opportunity to have the choice between repair and replace on every service or maintenance call with older or poorly-working equipment.

I hope that from the moment you are dispatched and driving to your call you are mentally preparing for what lies ahead. For example, the dispatcher has informed you that you are going to service a 12 year-old furnace which has had multiple nuisance service calls in recent years and you’re about to see a very unhappy customer. Well, today is your day. And, fortunately for your customer, today is their day as well. Today they will be offered a choice. And you know from the service history you have been given from dispatch it is time to forget about the problems of the past and look toward the future.

After your on-time arrival and your pleasant greeting with the homeowner, you slip on your boot covers and with the customer proceed to inspect the suspect furnace. In very short order you have determined the gas valve has failed and requires replacement. This is your time to shine and present your client with the Repair Vs. Replace Choice worksheet.

Using your worksheet and the price book you can very quickly show your homeowner the opportunity that exists today by considering replacing their troubled system with a new high efficiency comfort system and stop overpaying the utility each month. You could take it a step further and show what a great R.O.I. (return on investment) they will get by investing in a new system today vs. another costly repair.

By providing this choice you have opened the door to a better future. A better future for you, a better future for your company but most importantly, a better future for your customer.

Tye Leishman has serviced, installed and sold HVAC systems for more than 20 years. He is the founder and President of Tempco Refrigeration & Air Conditioning Ltd., a full service HVACR/Electrical contractor located in Powell River, B.C. Canada. He is also a certified sales trainer with TRUST® Training and Consulting. Tye can be reached at 1-604-485-5352.

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