Five Core Concepts: “Moments of Truth”

KickStart: “A Moment of Truth is any point when your customer (or a prospect) comes into contact with your company AND subliminally forms an opinion.” Steve Toburen

I recently depressed everyone warning about the hidden “customer minefields” just waiting to explode (without warning😰) on every residential job. Doubt me?

Think how often you’ve left a home feeling great about the fantastic job you did. (And the nice wad of cash in your pocket too!)👍

complaining home service customerThen that evening you’re shocked to get a complaining phone call, read your customer’s unhappy text or even worse- get bushwhacked with a nasty “surprise” online review!😲

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Here’s WHY homeowners blow up on contractors … with no warning!

Miguel Cervantes quoteKickStart: “Forewarned, forearmed; to be prepared is half the victory” Miguel Cervantes

Normally you’ll find me commiserating with the poor owners (and managers) of residential service companies. (This can be a tough business!)

But let’s save some pity for your front-line workers! After all, every day they’re walking into the “minefield” of a customer’s home!😲

“A minefield, Steve? Seriously?” Too dramatic for you? Then think on this: The dictionary says a minefield is: “Any area filled with hidden explosive devices.” 

Hmmmm…🤔 So, are your client’s homes “filled with hidden explosive devices”? Absolutely! Think how often your employees (or you) get bushwhacked by a homeowner “blowing up” with zero warning and for no apparent reason! (The stories I could share!)🙄

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OBSESS over (your home service clients) FEELINGS!

KickStart: “… it’s not what you say or what you do, but how you make people feel that matters the most.” Tony Hsieh, Zappos founder

focus on residential services profits“Feelings, Steve? Seriously?” As a rugged, profits-obsessed residential services business owner you likely focus ONLY on your bottom line! (I did too!) After all, who had time for a squishy, hard-to-manage word like, “feelings”?

I mean, everyone knows “emotions are for sissies”?💪 Right? WRONG! For far too many agonizing years I struggled before FINALLY learning that…

In a residential service business success is based on building “trusting relationships” (TR’s)! 

In fact, Mr. Logical here even reduced this concept into an “Emotional Equation”: Success= (ETR + HTR) x SE= CMB. Say what, Steve?😲

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Clearly Defining Your Home Service Client’s Expectations

KickStart: ‘Clearly defined expectations’ are the basis for all successful relationships.(Including with your homeowner clients.)

This KickStart quote above is a one-size-fits-all principle to guide your business and just maybe… your life!💖 (After all, you have a myriad of ‘ongoing relationships’.) But today, let’s focus on molding your business relationship with each residential customer…

complicated service client relationshipI know. You’re thinking, “Steve, I’m not marrying my homeowner clients! I don’t care about a ‘relationship’.  Honestly? All I want is to a) do the job, b) get paid and c) get on to the next job!”

I get it but SORRY! It just doesn’t work that way!👎 To be truly successful in any Home Services business you MUST focus on each homeowner’s relationship with you AND your workers! Here’s why:

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Can you use a complaint to ‘tune up’ your home services company?

KickStart: Analyze WHY a complaint/problem occurred and HOW to prevent the issue from happening again.

Normally when I train on my ‘Complaint Conversion’ techniques folks assume we’ll focus on ‘Converting Complainers into Cheerleaders. I call this the ‘Triple C’ and it IS very important!

However, when a homeowner complains (hopefully not very often) I suggest a much more important question to ask yourself…

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3 phrases to win over an unhappy homeowner!

KickStart: Convert an angry residential client into a Cheerleader by 1) saying “Thank you”, 2) apologizing, and 3) reassuring them. Shocked? Then read on…

You’ve started making the Immediate Quality Check Calls I recently suggested? I’m honored! (And always a bit surprised when clients actually implement what I recommend!) But wait!

UH-OH! You’ve dug up an unhappy customer.😲 However, instead of panicking I want you first to say…

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How to (gently) promote online reviews!

KickStart: Want more reviews? Mention how important their online review is to the employee who worked in the customer’s home.

Let me be clear. I am NOT a ‘marketing guru’! Why not? Because the constant, frenetic changes in online marketing make my head hurt!😲 But I do know a bit about ‘Timeless Concepts’ (this phrase IS part of my tag line, after all!) in business.

Hands down, marketing’s most ‘Timeless Concept’ is ‘word of mouth’ advertising. But NOW it can be supercharged with ‘Today’s Tools’! (Darn it- how did the second half of my tag line sneak in here?)😁

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Stop communicating ‘intrusively’

stressed home services customerKickStart: When booking their work give your residential customer options on how you should contact them.

All of us (including you, me AND your residential clients) are more stressed (and OUT of control) than ever before!😲 This is why you must help your customers FEEL ‘in control’. (Including on their first nervous phone call inquiring about your services.)

But remember, no customer wants to completely control your work on their home. If they did, the home owner wouldn’t be calling your company. They’d just do the work themselves!

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Home Service Customers Appreciate ‘Personal Space’

KickStart: Set up routine procedures to avoid intruding on a home owner’s Personal Space.

respect service client personal spaceMost people try and keep a ‘physical bubble’ (personal space) around themselves. (As Jerry Seinfeld reminded us, nobody likes a ‘close talker’!) And of course with the pandemic’s constant drum beat of ‘social distancing’ this personal space is even more essential!

Now, you and I instinctively factor in other’s personal space. Heck, I didn’t want my clients getting ‘too close’ to me either! But do your front-line workers in customer’s homes respect your client’s personal space? Who cares? You should and here’s why!

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