Recently, I was reading an article about health and fitness as it relates to the misconception of dieting. My recent speech at Service World revolved around this same subject, and I thought I would share this information with you here as I believe there is a great correlation between our physical fitness and the technician’s training diet.
The health and fitness article revealed that:
- Research shows:
- The type of foods you eat can help you lose weight
- Dieting is not just counting calories
- Foods high in nutrients, fiber, and healthy fats:
- Can lower your caloric intake
- Keep you fuller for a longer period
- Satisfy hunger longer so you will eat less naturally
- Restrictive dieting:
- Leads you to believe you’ll lose weight
- It’s demanding and makes losing weight difficult to sustain
- The key to nutritious eating? Try to make every calorie count
- The CDC recommends 2.5 hours of moderate-intensity exercise every week
The correlation that we can relate to regarding a good training diet:
- Our research shows:
- The type of training is more important than how many sessions completed
- Training high in substance – both technical & communication:
- Can lower call backs
- Helps your technicians build more value
- Increases customer satisfaction
- Training should not be restricted to product knowledge only:
- Good technical training creates belief in the product
- Adding communication training will help techs build the value and benefits of the product on a call
- The key to awesome training? Try to make every session count
- We recommend ongoing training session with weekly reviews
The question then becomes: What are you feeding your technicians? Is it a steady diet of training, scheduled and on time, ongoing even during the busy seasons, and productive with take-aways and to do’s? And are you holding them accountable to practice what is being fed to them?
Let’s consider the three ways to increase sales and how a steady training diet will help your revenue stream. 1) You can get new customers through referrals and marketing. 2) You can get old customers back. 3) Service current clients with more products and services that fit their needs on every call. Which is the least expensive and most productive? I would argue that servicing current clients with more products and services while your techs are on calls is the best way. You have already spent the money to get into the home through your marketing efforts. The key to a higher than average ticket is training your technicians on specific products that clients want, and having your team able to communicate that in layman’s terms on every call.
We like to say that sales is the transfer of your belief to someone else, and the reward is money. This means that your technicians don’t need to become high pressured sales people, they just need to believe in accessory products and be able to transfer this belief to the homeowners during the call. This calls for ongoing expert product and communication training. The manufacturers that supply you with products should offer both aspects of training. This training is for product knowledge and how to communicate technical information in layman’s terms to the homeowner, so that they can make an educated smart buying decision. I would also add that you need to train your team on how to positively differentiate your company and themselves from your competition.
I realize that this is a 50,000 foot view of this subject, yet this type of training should be complementary and scheduled on an ongoing basis with the manufacturer to support their product line. When researching for accessory products and sales, you should ask the manufacturer how often they will be available to train your team and what medium they will use to do so. With technology today, this can be on-line recorded modules with tests, live interactive WebEx sessions supported by onsite training classes, and ride-alongs with your technicians to practice what is being trained. They must offer both product and communication training specific to their product to ensure your success.
Finally, you have a responsibility here as well to show your team that you are serious, and that it is not just something to fill time on your training days.
Executing your training plan should include these features:
- Dedicate accessory products as a department in your software so it can be measured and tracked
- Have a dedicated training room
- Set goals for your teams
- Set expectations for the call
- Have scheduled on-going training with substance and take-aways
- Have line item on your goal boards for that which you want to measure and improve
- Have fun with it! Create competition between team members with contest and rewards that are fully or partially subsidized by the manufacturer
Now go ahead and take action. Create a training plan, schedule it, and get your accessory manufacturers involved in the process.
Service Roundtable is dedicated to growing your bottom line and helping your business maximize its full potential. These group of contractors work together to assist you with marketing, sales, business, and so much more. Twice a month, seminars around the United States and Canada are held to network and further assist your business. Visit Service Roundtable.com to see if there are Success Days in your area!