The Formula for World-Class Results
Written by John LaPlant
Owners of businesses are in the people development business. If people cannot grow, there is no scenario where the business can grow. Reliable products and quality repairs are the price of admission to the customer. No consumer in her right mind is going to spend hard-earned dollars on products or repairs that do not work, that fail to get the job done. Successful co-workers do more than get the job done in the technically correct manner. Growing people requires more than making sure their technical skills are superb. Growing people is rooted in the building blocks of character, attitude, ethics, discipline, excellence, maturity, values, passion, integrity, open-mindedness, team player mentality, and doing what is right.
On August 10, 2019, a young woman named Simone Biles, five-time Olympic Medalist with lots of GOLD, six-time National All-Around Champion and 14-time World Champion, did the impossible – the never done before. On the high balance beam and the floor exercise, she executed and nailed the double-double and triple double dismount/landing respectively. WOW! How does that happen? Yes, DNA plays a significant part, but rotating, twisting and summersaults? Then “sticking” the landing! Come on, how do you tell which way is up and where the floor is anyway??? Search out the video on Youtube. I get dizzy just watching it. Total amazement and total awesomeness! Congratulations to Ms. Biles.
Gymnastics has been this woman’s chosen profession for some time. She was committed to excellence. She spent countless hours in practice and countless hours visualizing that moment. She had high expectations for herself, but she also had high expectations from her coaches and her teammates.
Top-notch levels of performance take continuous coaching, training, practice, and dedication to excellence. Ms. Biles spends hours in training every day. It requires everyday attention to be top-notch.
Acquiring new skills, attitudes, or behaviors does not happen overnight. It does require repetition, training, and practice…maybe even perfect practice and that is true for business models as well.
A good friend of mine and an extremely successful, consummate businessman Don Johnson, owner of Freedom Heating and Air, said he spends an average of four hours a day training and practicing with team members. This activity can be a scheduled group or department function, or an unscheduled, informal at-the-coffee-pot kind of thing. Everyone participates in the interaction and role-plays. It is the company way of taking the culture and brand to the marketplace. It builds relationships and value-added transactions. It is the company’s common language for educating the market served. It is the currency of connecting with the customer. We should make this choice to continuously train this seriously. Otherwise, we do not get gold medals. In fact, it is more important than gold medals. It is our livelihood and professionalism.
Here is an example of what Don does: He will meet one of his team members in the hallway and say, “Tell me why I should have a surge protector on my home’s HVAC equipment?” He waits for a response.
Via training, Don has armed everyone with details like the number of average lightning strikes per month from weather data and the number of average power surges or brown-outs in the area. Interesting that people think of protecting their computers from power surges, and a computer only costs a few hundred dollars. But what about the HVAC system that costs several thousand dollars? Is it protected with a safety device? This is a type of continuous education that Don personally does in his company.
Power Selling Pros is very good at using phases that carry significant positive impact when engaging a customer on the phone or face-to-face. These are the phrases that translate into feelings like, “I made a good decision calling this company.” Or, “These guys will be thorough and will not take any short cuts so it will be a great value.” Or, “Wow, this is a problem-solving team of professionals…no run around here!” It’s another example of continually using the same language and benefits reinforced through training that creates the complete customer experience.
Companies work on phraseology as a part of the culture. Certain words and phrases become the company language. It pushes the envelope of success. It says “I am better than I was yesterday, but, not as good as I will be tomorrow”. It is accepting the philosophy of continuous improvement. Think about what is acceptable to say and do and what is just plain unacceptable.
Angie Snow, co-owner of Western Heating and Air, posted this starter template of customer service phrases. And Ken Goodrich, owner of Goettl Air Conditioning, added to the list, “I’ll do my best.” And, April Hines, 2nd generation owner of Bay Air Conditioning, made posters and put them up on any wall space available as gentle reminders. It should get everyone on the team thinking about how to improve their role and ability to connect with the customer. And practicing everyday gets the company that much closer to gold.
There is nothing easy to becoming world class. It takes fortitude and consistency, but it is the real differentiator. Simone Biles has certainly differentiated her skills in the world of gymnastics. There are no short-cuts to greatness. Have you differentiated your business in the service world? Did you “stick” the customer service landing today?
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!
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