Yesterday I rode with Tom Kelley, a plumber and service Technician whom I have mentored for about a year and he shared with me how he has increased his plumbing sales. Tom has grown and it’s a joy to encourage him because he is like a sponge. When I recommend a book, he reads it. He takes notes in his journal while in class and he calls me when he needs help. And his plumbing sales in January 2014 were very nice.
Tom’s Plumbing Sales
Service calls 72
He told me something interesting that helped him increase his plumbing sales and he shared it several different times throughout the day in different ways. Tom said, “The thing that helped me the most was understanding that I just had to allow people to make the best choice for themselves. When I realized it wasn’t my responsibility to sell them and it was their responsibility to say yes or no, I became less stressed and just encouraged people to make their choice.”
In class we talk about building plumbing sales through understanding relationship boundaries. We touch on how to establish them and also the importance of respecting the boundaries of others and how this can increase plumbing sales. Prospects, customers and clients have the right to say “NO” and so do plumbers. But that’s another subject for another day.
Tom also said, “To increase my plumbing sales I learned that I needed to help people out of the ditch by reaching my hand down. Before I was in the ditch with them and felt bad if I couldn’t push them out of the ditch. I stopped rescuing people and just held the rope and asked them to climb up it. When I stopped pushing people to say yes and just encouraged them to climb up, more clients started climbing. It was realizing that it was all about choices, and that people have the right to make choices for themselves, I stopped wasting time with people who were content to stay in the ditch.”
I am not a sales trainer. I am relationship expert who teaches healthy psychology for better relationships. My mantra is “Building business though better relationships.”
Revenue is a function of relationship.
Those plumbers who focus on the relationship and NOT THE MONEY will have more plumbing sales over time. You won’t hit a home run every time but you will hit them. The money will come if you stay consistent.
That’s how Tom sold a 40 Gallon water heater when he was called out for another problem. Tom took care of the first problem and then shared his concern about the age of the water heater. When the customer asked him if he should replace his water heater, Tom responded honestly by asking the customer questions. Tom does not know the answer to that question and it’s not Toms choice to make. Tom responded and said “Well, that depends on whether or not you are reactive or proactive. Your water heater is fine today and it probably will be fine tomorrow. If you’re good with waiting until you have an emergency, then you should wait. If you want to avoid the pain and stress of an emergency, then you should replace it. So let me ask you, are you the kind of person that moves ahead of events to avoid them are do you wait and react to them?” The customer replied by saying “Let’s take care of it.”
Bingo! No selling involved… Just asking a few honest questions and helping the customer make the best choice for themselves.