PPM Menu

“Eight to Be Great”

March 7, 2024
Eight to Be Great

Let’s talk about what it takes to be at the top of your game and how you can virtually guarantee success in this industry, in your role as a CSR or a comfort advisor or a service technician, etc. It’s a concept I call “Eight to Be Great.”

In every type of sales-based career, we’re on the lookout for perfect customers. But it’s rarely possible to find the perfect customer. Most of the time, we deal with rather imperfect customers. Maybe they don’t have a ton of money. Or they’re just not very nice. And don’t forget about the ones who don’t like to listen. There will always be customers who have bad credit. But we have to deal with all types of customers; the good, the bad, and the ugly.

So in my “Eight to Be Great,” I’m not talking about finding the perfect customer; although if you do, you’ve lucked out. I’m talking about identifying the 8 characteristics that make a great person in your role, the perfect you, so to speak. We will talk about the customer, but it’s not the main focus. So here’s what I mean.

Take out a sheet of paper and draw the old Ben Franklin T-chart. On the left side, add numbers from 1 through 8 and write down the characteristics of a perfect customer. A perfect customer might be somebody with great credit or tons of money. They might be someone who really needs your service. In other words, they might currently be without heating or air conditioning. Another characteristic might be honesty. They might be willing to listen. They might simply be loyal to your company for whatever reason. So identify all the characteristics that outline the perfect customer, the perfect homeowner in those 8 spaces on the chart.

On the other side of the T-chart, I want you to add numbers 1-8 and write down the characteristics that make the perfect you, meaning the perfect CSR, the perfect comfort advisor, the perfect manager or owner, or the perfect service technician. The perfect service technician might be highly educated, highly skilled, a great communicator, a great closer, an amazing troubleshooter, fearless when it comes to asking for the order, or someone who builds great relationships, for example. In other words, the things that would identify you as the very best at what you do.

So how does this translate? Well, if your homeowner has all 8 of those characteristics, you can probably do a crappy job on the service call or the sales call and still have great success, right? We see that a lot of times with new people. They’re very inexperienced, and they go out there and close a huge deal. Why? Because they had a perfect customer who had no heat or air, tons of money and great credit. And they’re just nice people, maybe loyal to your company, all those things. As you look at those, just remember, you’re very rarely going to have a customer who has all 8.

So, if my customer is an 8, I can sometimes be a 1 for a total score of 9 for that experience, and I can still be successful. Everyone knows we have a bad day now and then, and a high customer score can prevent it from becoming a worse day.

That also means if your customer is a 2 or a 3, they’ve only got 2 or 3 of those characteristics; you had better have 5, 6, or 7 to make up the gap. But this is the beautiful thing. You have 100% control over your own 8 in order to be great. You don’t have any control over whether or not the homeowner is a good customer. Remember that all the things you wrote down about the customer have nothing to do with you or your influence; it’s just qualities they have whether or not you call on them.

And if you are great, meaning you score high on your own characteristics, then even if you have a shitty customer, you can still be successful. Will it be harder? Of course. But not everything is going to be easy in our sales-centered world.

The closer the sales experience is to a total of 16, the better the chance of a sale. If you have that slam-dunk customer and you’ve perfected your own score, then sales will certainly follow. The lower that total score gets under 16, the harder it will be to label it “a sure thing.”

So stop and think about what 8 characteristics make you great and focus on those because those are things you have control over. You get to decide how good you are at communicating or asking for the sale because you can work on that through training and practice, or you can take classes. You get to decide how technically savvy you are as a technician.

You can also get other training, like an NAIT certification. Check with your distributor to see which certifications they offer.

If you’re not a great closer, you can come to one of my classes, and I’ll teach you how to be one. A stone-cold closer.

So my point is you can improve all characteristics that you can control, and you have to stay focused on those because it’s what you can control in life that matters. There’s no use in complaining about leads being poor. Why? Because you can take an 8 score with you on every call. Every point the customer adds just brings you closer to the sale.