The Isaac Approach
At Isaac, we have two sales roles. First are our Project Managers (PM). These are our “sales reps,” though they are responsible for so much more than just collecting contracts from clients. A Project Manager oversees the entire sales process, from initial consultation to the completion of a project.
Then we have our Home Performance Auditors. Their primary responsibility is to evaluate the home from a health and safety, comfort, and energy consumption standpoint and make the appropriate recommendations. When these recommendations turn into jobs, our auditors then take on the PM role.
Auditors undergo training and continuing education on the company’s approach to home performance using both internal and external training resources. As a result, our team understands we don’t just swap out equipment.
At the end of the day, we sell unfinished products that require installation. So much of the customer-value lies in the experience of the company doing the installation. Training helps add to that experience level and it also helps with technician retention.
As a tech, learning something new every day has a direct impact on how well you perform. From my perspective, that’s an environment where people can thrive.
One of the ways Isaac Heating actively works to curb technician turnover is through a high level of engagement. The COVID pandemic has presented some unique challenges to this concept, the biggest of which is limiting regular face-to-face meetings.
I don’t get to physically see my team. So we still have regularly scheduled virtual team huddles (ncilink.com/VirtualTraining).
Along with this kind of engagement, you must remove barriers to make the sales process as easy to follow as possible. This also works for creating a better client experience.
Value and Culture
In our sales process, we focus on building value, not cost. I see that as a parallel to retention and pay. When bringing on a new rep, the real focus should be on creating a bond with them. They will learn pricing, proper design, and product knowledge, but you have to make them a part of the family.
While money can be a motivator, it cannot overcome things like poor culture or poor leadership. Money provides a temporary shot of adrenaline which then fades.
Sales representatives need to have a sense of gratification and clear rewards for goals achieved. The last thing you want is for a rep to be worried about their pay.
Culture includes community service. We often give back to our community by offering our time and expertise. It is through things like a charitable installation or fundraising auction that you see internal bonds being cultivated and relationships strengthened. This part of our culture helps to strengthen our employee retention.
Salespeople will always be driven by representing the best product. Again, furnaces and air conditioners by themselves are largely unfinished products. Designing and connecting them to solid ventilation systems makes the difference.
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