Summer prep is under way! The preventative maintenances are on! We use this time of year to remind our techs what their expectations are over the next several months. Proper maintenance will prevent most unnecessary service request during primetime leaving your service board open to new customers and new problems. Take a walk with your customer to show them the services you just provided them and make sure they understand the value of maintaining filters. It’s really about equipment cleanliness and efficiency. Keep your eyes open to other issues in the home, like the condition of the ductwork, hot water heaters, and water pipes. Help them understand how to use their equipment for best operation and comfort. Remember to show your value at every visit. The best way to grow your service agreements is to minimize the ones that don’t renew. That means the ones you sell go more toward growth. We spent the last 30 days reiterating the reasons for agreements in the first place which include higher sales closure rates and more consistent shoulder season work, etc.
Several great events are already on our calendar for the fall, so save the dates. Our annual Golf Event will be held at Raspberry Falls, VA on Friday, September 13 and we are bringing back The Heat Exchanger Experts for a second year in a row on Monday, September 30. I sent three techs last year and they loved it. One of the best tech trainings that we do. And watch out for a couple more events without dates yet, our Legislative Event, where we discuss where we are now and our intentions for 2020 and we are working on a Seminar with a highly rated Keynote Speaker.
Have a great Summer 2019!
Mike Tucker AACP, President
By Shawn Whiteley
Purchasing an HVAC system is often overwhelming to homeowners since it involves making a significant investment in complex equipment that they may not know much about. With your in-depth industry knowledge, you have the opportunity to help customers feel informed about their choices and comfortable choosing to work with you. In the end, customers just want a problem-free HVAC system installed by a contractor they trust.
Be the Online and Offline HVAC Expert
Because many homeowners have limited knowledge about what to do when it’s time to repair or replace their HVAC system, they often start with the Internet for advice. Once online, they find a wealth of information, which unfortunately is not always accurate. As the expert, you can use the consultation to help them to sort through what they’ve read or heard and correct any misperceptions.
Stay Smart on Regulations and Qualifications
Staying up to date on HVAC regulations and standards can set you apart from competitors. When explaining how standards impact a homeowner’s HVAC options, keep things simple and relevant. Again, the typical consumer is most concerned about an HVAC system that’s reliable and worry-free, but because standards and regulations can impact their experience, such as energy efficiency and repair cost, this information can be valuable to share.
Listen to the Homeowner
It all boils down to listening to the customer. Spend time getting to know your clients, assessing their environment, and asking questions to understand their concerns and needs.
Re-Engaging After the Sale
Champion First-Year Annual Service
Use Milestones to Keep in Touch
Being in the HVAC business is being in the relationship business. Send a thank you note after the purchase, letting the homeowners know that you appreciate working with them. Send a date-of-sale anniversary card to show the homeowner you’re still thinking of them even after a year has passed. Take the time to sign and add a personal note. The anniversary mark is also a great time to remind homeowners what their warranty offers, schedule a maintenance appointment, and tell them about your new products and services.
About the Author
Shawn Whiteley is the Senior Regional Manager for American Standard Heating & Air Conditioning, a brand of Ingersoll Rand. In his role, Whiteley oversees sales and share growth in Oklahoma, Arkansas, Tennessee Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas. He has a long-tenure with Ingersoll Rand having been with the company for fifteen years in various roles across the southern United States. Whiteley currently resides in Edmond, Oklahoma with his wife and two daughters.
By Daniel Keller
If you’re a leader in your company, and one or more of your employees exhibits negative behavior, it can affect not only the morale of other employees but their productivity as well. At its extreme, employees with negative attitudes about work may need counseling; however, simple steps may resolve issues before they become a major problem in your organization.
There are a variety of steps that you can put into place to reduce negativity in the workplace:
About the Author
Daniel Keller is the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and President of Interim HR Consulting. He is a collaborative cross-functional leader with demonstrated success in defining business strategies, building high-performing teams, and achieving demanding operational and financial business goals.
Interim HR Consulting is a staffing firm purely dedicated to providing human resource talent. We are a nationally recognized firm, providing staffing for companies of every size, including many of our nation’s most respected companies. For temporary or contingency staffing, our partners know we can be trusted to bring the candidates they need to make their human resource team the best they can be.
By Alex Willis
As millennials enter the trades, a new wave of entry-level employees are clashing with older generations that have dominated the field — making teamwork more difficult than it needs to be.
Along with the generational behavioral differences, companies are also facing an employee gap. The gap represents the number of retiring workers versus the number of qualified workers ready to replace them. Many workers come straight out of high school without much, if any, additional training. In fact, there are so many entry-level employees in the trades, that there are too many to properly train. This creates a problem when trying to find new people to replace those that have decades of experience. As leadership retires, companies also struggle to find people to move into leadership roles.
The construction industry has dealt with its fair share of ups and downs. Recently, construction has been booming. While this is great for employees, it can be bad for companies. Overall profit margins remain low, which means companies need to operate as efficiently as possible to stay afloat. Even though the need to operate efficiently exists, valuable working time is often wasted. Waiting around for materials, traveling between jobs, and taking multiple breaks during the day all eat away at an employee’s ability to work efficiently.
Aside from issues in the field, employees also don’t always trust that upper level leaders have everyone’s best interests in mind. No matter the reason why trust is lacking, upper level leaders need to work harder to maintain confidence with employees.
Even though the trades seem to be plagued with multiple issues, companies can take steps to elevate employees through leadership training. With so many entry-level employees, companies have to rely on incorporating technology to help reach the masses, creating consistency in delivering training material.
It’s known that trainees forget 50 percent of what was said one hour after a training course. Breaking this learning material into bite-sized chunks helps employees retain the information.
The key to breaking through the generational gap is leadership capacity. Through leadership training workers can learn how to overcome the new generational differences present in the field. They will also learn the skills necessary to take over the jobs of soon-to-be retirees, all while learning how to work more efficiently.
Training isn’t only beneficial to the teams’ success, but also to the workers’ individual success. Leaders in the front line of any organization must be equipped with soft skills the same way they are equipped with technical skills. As a result, productivity and job satisfaction will rise. It’s a win-win situation.
The problems in the trade industry are not going away anytime soon. Veteran employees in the trades must begin to see themselves as coaches. Coaches set the tone and tempo for a team to achieve a specific goal. They do whatever it takes to win. Companies must use this approach to adapt so that its front line employees can adapt as well.
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About the Author
Alex Willis is CEO of Leadership Surge, a team of committed professionals dedicated to cultivating leaders. For more information, visit www.leadershipsurge.com.
Upcoming Certification Refresher Classes & Testing
By AFGO Mechanical Services
Because tune-ups are so critical to the success of your business, consider creating or growing a formal HVAC maintenance program to prevent missing out on a huge opportunity. With the right features, both you and your customers can benefit from having an HVAC maintenance membership.
What’s Included in an HVAC Maintenance Membership?
Benefits of Maintenance Programs for HVAC Companies
Clearly, the right approach to HVAC maintenance plans can contribute substantially to customer satisfaction, referral rates, and ultimately your bottom line. Launch a program today to see the impact it has on your business!
About the Author
AFGO Mechanical Services has worked around the clock to establish our reputation as an HVAC industry leader. AFGO is proud to provide comprehensive HVAC services to businesses throughout the NYC metro area, including installation, retrofit, and replacement; custom maintenance agreements; emergency repairs; and more. For more information, please contact AFGO Mechanical.