Unless you have been under a rock somewhere, it’s virtually impossible to ignore the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation and appointment process. And regardless of where you fall in the political spectrum, I’d like for you to keep an open mind and consider two things that this entire situation, and as it unfolded in front of the nation, what it can teach you about sales as a painting contractor. So I need you to follow me all the way through this and in some places the analogy may break down a little bit but if you will think real hard about it, I believe you will come to the same conclusions that I do, and I hope that you will also make changes that will help you.
Number one, you are absolutely 100% guilty by association when you walk into the home or the business of a potential client that you wish to serve, and here’s what I mean. The painting contractors profession follows you and its reputation everywhere you go. Largely its negative and people have had terrible experiences with “A Man in a Van” businesses, contractors, et cetera, since they began their business, since they started living in their home. And when you show up, even though it is completely unfair and even though you had nothing to do with all of those negative experiences that they’ve had in the past, buddy, you’re guilty because … Guess what? You’re one of those people and when you’re one of those people, they’re going to try you before you ever start. So there is guilt by association.
The second thing I want you to become clear on is that not only is there guilt by association, you are guilty until proven innocent. Meaning when you show up to do an estimate, people look at you, look at your profession, look at contractors in general, and they immediately believe that things are going to go wrong and that you are going to take advantage of them. So from the beginning, your job is to prove to them that’s not the case. Now, it is not enough to simply make some small talk, to show up, to look professional. It’s not enough to be in a logo’d shirt, it’s not enough to drive up in a logo’d vehicle. Guess what? They’ve been taken advantage of by people like that before. It’s not about if this situation is fair, it’s about reality. So your job is from pre-positioning, to presenting, to post-positioning, to follow-up, to have tons of powerful proof that you show them all the way through.
I want you to think about it, if you were on trial, what would happen? You couldn’t just stand up in front of the judge and say, “I’m a pretty good guy, and all this stuff that’s happened to you doesn’t matter”. No, you would have to … just like in our legal system, bring a ton of proof and that means opening arguments, your entire case file, closing arguments, supplemental information you would give to jurors and we break those down into primary tools such as the company story, a leave-behind massive case file, a post positioning packet and then our closing arguments for winning the job. If you haven’t broken your sales process up as if you were on trial – guilty by association, as unfair as it may be and guilty before proven innocent – you’re really making a big mistake.
Just because they smile and show up at the door and nod and seem to be very affable while you’re there at the home or in the office does not mean that they are convinced that you are the contractor of choice. It does not mean that they are convinced that you are a professional, because our industry, specifically with painters and, larger overall with contractors, is not as professional as it could be and they’ve had bad experiences. So, I hope you will take these two lessons from the Brett Kavanaugh trial and make sure that you apply them in your sales process with tools, processes, and procedures so that you can give a client experience that it is so unique and different that they can’t help but give you a positive verdict, which is start the job and ultimately give you a check.
I’m Brandon Lewis with Painter’s Academy and Painter’s Weekly. Change your sales process and you change your business. Take care.