flexiblefullpage - default
interstitial1 - interstitial
Currently Reading

Subtle Problem, Big Impact: It's All About How You Sell

Advertisement
billboard -

Subtle Problem, Big Impact: It's All About How You Sell

Technically, this remodeling company did nothing wrong, but I would never hire them


By By Erika Taylor February 10, 2015
This article first appeared in the PR February 2015 issue of Pro Remodeler.

We own a home in Dallas and one in Los Angeles, which my son is currently “renting.” (Anyone who’s had a kid between 21 and 25 knows that “renting” is to renting, as “crab meat” is to crab meat.)

Anyway, over the years I’ve needed to hire a number of remodelers, and the experience has often been bad. There was the company that installed our shower tile directly on top of drywall with no effort made at waterproofing. Another firm wouldn’t show up to start the job, and after four days of promises, I had to let them go.

We’ve all heard horror stories. But there’s another problem I’ve experienced with remodeling companies that I think is more troubling. It’s a subtler issue and harder to combat.

My new job involves working from home, and I need to build dedicated office space. Yesterday I had a remodeler come by to give a bid. The issue—so nuanced that it’s hard to even describe—started right away.

After walking in the door, the saleswoman and project manager stood for a moment, looking curiously around the living room of our 1920s duplex. The space is unique, and to my eye, quite lovely. So, why did I feel so self-conscious as they wordlessly scanned our home?

“Let’s go outside, and I’ll show you where I want the office built,” I finally said.

Once there, I warned them that there might be dog poop in the yard, but rather than watching their step, neither of them would enter the lawn area, electing instead to question me from the driveway as I stood alone on the grass.

“What kind of siding do you want?”

“I don’t know,” I said.

“This whole duplex is yours?” the man asked. “Why don’t you live in the upstairs unit?”

“Umm … my husband doesn’t like to climb the stairs,” I replied.

“Why don’t you just build an addition? Why a detached office?”

I couldn’t answer. They weren’t seeing or hearing me. I want a clean, bright space that’s completely my own. I want windows facing the house since that’s the direction that gets sun, and this white winter sky gives me the blues. I’ve dreamed about the little stone path, the pitch of the roofline, maybe a skylight. 

“You’re going to have to move your electrical panel,” the man said.

“Oh,” I answered.

“Do you want a toilet?”

They asked for a copy of my plat, but I lied and said I didn’t know where it was. They handed me a fancy brochure and left.

Technically, this firm did nothing wrong, but I would never hire them. They weren’t there to learn about my needs, not really. Instead, the only goal seemed to be adding another job to the roster. This mindset is hard to address because it’s an empathy issue. I believe companies would be better served by training staff to think about a sales call from the customer’s perspective rather than just their own. If they listened to homeowners in a careful, attentive way, they might increase their closing ratio.

Shortly after they left, I called a high-end prefab shed company. The rep was amazing, asking insightful questions, listening to my answers, and speaking with true enthusiasm about ways to customize the product. Now all I need is someone to install it. PR

Technically, this remodeling company did nothing wrong, but I would never hire them


written by

Erika Mosse

Director of Content

Erika Mosse is the director of content for Professional Remodeler. Contact her at emosse@sgcmail.com or 972.803.4014.


Add new comment

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and email addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • CAPTCHA

    This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Related Stories

How to Master the Art of Language in Remodeling Sales

Mark Richardson says it's a remodeler's obligation to communicate, not your client, trade partner, or team's responsibility to understand

Tips for Qualifying Leads in Today's Market

Jenny Rice developed Icon Building Group's division from the ground up. She talks managing leads and budgets in today's changing market.

5 Themes for Mastering Remodeling Sales

"Get out of this notion that sales isn't a respectable thing. Those in sales do the best out there in terms of what they can accomplish."

6 Considerations for Using a Texting Platform in Your Business

Texting remains the most popular way to communicate. How can larger companies do it effectively through platforms?

Marketing Lessons From The New American Remodel 2022

A local remodeler with a great project can use some of the same approaches to attract new business.

5 Tips for Getting More Good Reviews

Use these guidelines to gain new business through online reviews.

Looking Ahead: Preparing for the Worst

There will be a downturn again. Will it be in 2022?

A 7-Step Checklist for Refreshing Your Website

If you're looking to make small yet impactful changes to refresh your company website, follow these 7 steps.

12 Tech Solutions Remodelers Recommend

From design to collaboration to speed-to-lead, these are the tools remodelers are using today.

5 Expert Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your CRM

Using a customer relationship management (CRM) product can help streamline communications and marketing, but it's important to know a few marketing…
Advertisement
boombox1 -
Advertisement
native1 -

More in Category




Advertisement
native2 -
Advertisement
halfpage1 -