Death of an HVAC Salesman

what killed Bill Jones

Across the table, the homeowner has the pen is his hand. His eyes move back and forth across the proposal. The tip of the pen presses on the premier package. Bill Jones, an HVAC Salesman, is watching. The homeowner’s eyes move back and forth across the proposal. The tip of the pen presses on the premier package. It sits there. Ink starts to form a small blot of blue. An eternity passes in 6 seconds.

The Death of an HVAC Salesman

He lifts the pen. His eyebrows push together, and it looks like two large caterpillars are pressing together face-to-face. He removes his glasses, and with his thumb and pointer finger he presses his eyebrows apart and flat.

The next question makes Bill panic,

Tell me about your installers. Do they do good work?

A bead of sweat runs down his back. It follows his spine and slips past his belt loop. More follows. Soon, this river of sweat has forked and grown.

This HVAC salesperson was once an HVAC Technician. Before that, Bill was an Installer.

Pride was always at the center of Bill’s work. His installs were clean, and his repairs were good. A few years ago, his answer would have been fast and easy.

We do great work, and have the best installers! Our management team takes care of our clients. And, we are also human. We strive for perfection, but make the occasional mistake. The good news is, we always resolve the problems promptly!

That was the past. Things have changed.

He knows that “sometimes we do good work” will not be the close needed for a 14,000 dollar air conditioning system.

He looks at the homeowner. He thinks of this family, and he thinks of what could happen. He then gives his answer.

[5 minutes later]

Bill sits in his truck. He feels sick to his stomach. At this moment, he hates himself.  “I can’t live with himself, and do this work,” he thinks to himself.

[tap tap tap] His fingers work through his debrief text with dispatch. He completes a line, then erases. Writes another line, erases it.

He finally settles on the message,

I quit. I’ll turn my truck in tonight. I can’t do this.

After Bill sends the message, he pulls away from the curb. He feels better. Then he feels worse. Then he’s confused.

Anger erupts. He slams on the breaks, and pounds the steering wheel as he curses.

“What happened to our company?” he thinks.

He recalls all the good times. The happy faces, and company events. He hasn’t seen a happy face for a while.

This HVAC Salesman was once an HVAC Tech. Before that, he was an HVAC Installer. Today, he quit. Tomorrow, he’ll look in the help wanted ads to see if they are hiring in the oil field.

Note from Todd:

This industry’s foundation is built upon trust, quality, and relationships.

The greatest HVAC salespeople take pride in the quality and craftsmanship of their installers. They depend upon the support of management and owners to enforce the promises that are made.

Quality work and kept promises are the greatest closing tools the Professional HVAC Salesperson owns. Without these tools, failure will follow.  FREE TOOLS HERE

I love the Professionals of the Residential Trades. And, I realize that most of our readers take pride in their work. I asked that you take this as a warning. That you see this tale as the potential story of one of your best team members. And, you do your best to avoid it.

Sit down with each of your HVAC Sales Professionals, and ask them this question.

Do we do good installs?

Can you relate to Bill in this story?

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