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Making it easier

11/5/2013 7:08 AM
Being a construction contractor is a challenging job. Keeping up with rules and regulations, staying on top of new techniques, making sure your employees are all going home at the end of the day and so much more. Now you are probably wondering what just got easier. Easier to do work? Easier to be successful? Easier to find work? How about all of these!

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Skilled workers are in short supply, how will you find them?

11/4/2013 5:00 AM
Whether we are talking to a big or a small contractor, many of our ABC members are asking the same questions:
Where can we find skilled workers and how can we get the next generation of workers interested in the trades?
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How Satisfied Are Your Employees and Does It Matter?

10/31/2013 2:57 PM
A large body of research shows a strong link between employee satisfaction (aka: employee engagement) and business performance.  Yet, a large number of businesses do not really know the truth about how their employees feel about working for them.  Are they fully engaged and productive?  Do they represent your business well to their family, friends, and neighbors? 
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The Compensation Conundrum

10/29/2013 7:19 AM
Jim Collins in his book Good to Great writes, “The purpose of a compensation system should not be to get the right behavior from the wrong people, but to get the right people on the bus in the first place and then keep them there.”
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Do you need to change your thinking about membership?

10/7/2013 7:09 AM
I am very happy with my insurance provider. I pay my premiums and get good service. As a happy customer, I might recommend them to a friend given the opportunity but, I don’t really feel obligated to help them find more customers.  Read the rest of entry »

Four Thousand Year Old Solution to the Skilled Worker Shortage

8/14/2013 12:28 PM
The Egyptians realized a simple truth.  Skills and knowledge must be handed down from generation to generation for any craft to survive. They devised a deceptively simple training process still used today.  That system is apprenticeship. Read the rest of entry »

Three Mistakes Service Technicians Make Every Day

7/24/2013 5:11 AM

Service Technicians typically know how to identify malfunctioning components, troubleshoot, and solve technical problems, but do they understand the public relations aspects of what they say and do? According to a taskforce of different types and sizes of service contractors throughout Wisconsin, the answer is “No, not at all!

Three mistakes service technicians often make that can cost you money:

Mistake #1:  Thinking the Company Only Advertises in Newspapers and the Yellow Pages  

The Truth:   From the moment your service technicians start their company assigned vehicles, they are marketing your company.  In other words, your company vehicles are moving billboards. A clean truck with a driver who obeys traffic rules and speed limits, speaks volumes about your company.  So does a dirty truck with your company logo on the side running a stop light.  First impressions can either drive business to or away from your company. Make sure your company vehicles reflect your organization in the best way possible.

Mistake #2:  Thinking Appearance Doesn’t Matter

The Truth:  Here is a simple fact.  Customers want professional looking technicians coming into their homes or businesses who are well groomed, with a clean uniform. Some customers, such as those in retail, actually have customers themselves. In that case, your service technician not only represents your company, but the customer’s company as well.
Most customers react negatively to  dirty clothing or strong smells, such as cigarette, alcohol, or body odor. Your service technicians represent your company. Are they sending the right message when they appear on your customer’s doorstep or front office? 

Mistake #3: Thinking You Can SAY Anything to the Customer 

The Truth:  This could not be further from the truth.  Actually, what you say and how you say it is extremely important.  It can mean the difference between earning repeat and new customers through word of mouth, and losing both current and potential customers forever.  

Service technicians should be direct in their approach and use plain English, rather than what might be perceived as “technobabble” by the customer.  It is best to stick to the problem and possible solutions. 

Service Techs should not comment on expensive furnishings or collectables they might see in a house.  They should not discuss favorite movies, political beliefs, or unrelated current topics.  Technicians should never portray their supervisor or employer in a negative way or make comments about how high the bill is compared to what they are being paid.  The big problem with any of these discussion topics is threefold:

1. The customer is listening and is forming opinions based on what the technician is saying.
2. The customer may not share the technician’s opinion.
3. The customer could easily assume the technician is speaking for the company.

In addition, service technicians are typically paid by the hour and anything that distracts a technician from the task at hand or casts a negative light on the employer can become a major point of contention when the bill is presented.

For more information:
This article was based on the Public Relations topic in SERV Tech Talks, an in-house training program for service managers and service technicians.  For a preview copy of Tech Talks and more information about the human side of service work, click on the links below:

Preview Book
Order Form
Video Presentation

Associated Builders and Contractors of Wisconsin
5330 Wall Street, Madison, WI 53718

Phone: 800-236-2224 or 608-244-5883
Fax: 608-244-2401