Canadian Electrical Industry News Week

March 30 2016

Shawn McCadden

If you have been getting business by providing free estimates for everyone who calls your business, you are most likely wasting a lot of money-making time. Are you really an expert in your industry if you have been letting those who buy from you tell you how to run your business? If these things have been happening to you it’s time to recognize the value of your time and expertise. It’s also time to limit offering them only to those who find value in what you offer, how you do so, and are willing to pay you well for your expertise. Here are three ways successful contractors reduce their lead flow, improve the quality of the leads they get, and sell more jobs at higher prices.

1- Describe your process on your web site and find ways to entice visitors to check it out

Do you have a defined process for how you do business? If not, create it. If you do have a define process, document it with words and pictures and put it on your web site. By explaining how you do business on your web site you can save a lot of time and make more money because you won't have to explain it to everyone you meet, over and over again.

If they have not yet checked out how you do business when they call your office, send them a link to the "How we do business" page on your web site. Additionally, mutually agree to when you will then call them back to see if they still want to meet with you.

Because the information is presented in writing on your website, prospects won't be able to interrupt you as they typically do when you try to explain your process to them during live sales calls. If the information is well written, they will either recognize that your process works as a solution for them, or they will know why it’s not right for them. This can help you avoid defending your process as you try to explain it to them live and in person. If they don't like your process after checking out your website, they won't waste your time.

2- Charge for creating specifications and a fixed price proposal

Another thing to explain at your web site is why estimates are free but a fixed cost proposal from you requires paying a fee. Think about it. An estimate is just a guess. Any experienced contractor should be able to provide a best guess estimated cost range for project types he or she has past experiences with. In a logical way, explain why you charge to go past a free estimate. If they still call you, selling your services to create the proposal will be much faster and easier. For guidance on what to write, read on below.

If you don't have a website, read on anyway to find out how you can still do this live and in person.

If they want a fixed price, why not help them recognize what it will take to get to a fixed price? Help them

  • discover, say and agree that plans and or specification will be needed before you or any other contractor can determine a fixed price for them
  • identify whether they will need plans to visualize the project before being able to confidently commit
  • decide if they need help finding and differentiating between product options and their price points
  • recognize the effort and hours you and your trade partners will need to dedicate to preparing a proposal for them

If they recognize the need for these things, you can then ask them if they would like to discuss your design and specification process, as well as how you charge for it.

3- Require a return visit to present your proposal and get their decision

Even if you are not ready to charge for them, before committing to preparing plans, specs and a proposal make an agreement with your prospect. Let them know that to prepare a proposal for them you require coming back to sit down to review, discuss and get a yes or no decision on your proposal, and about working with your company. Remember, you will have more time to do this because by being more selective you will be creating fewer estimates and proposals. Those who won't meet with you probably aren't interested enough in working with you anyway. Perhaps they were just hoping for more free ideas from you before hiring the cheapest contractor or performing the work themselves. If they won't commit to meeting with you to review your proposal, that's one less you have to do, freeing you up to concentrate on those prospects who respect you as a professional and value your process.

By committing to fewer estimates and proposals you will gain the time you need to put together and present proposals that differentiate your business from other contractors. By being different you will attract clients who want different. Consumers who want different know they have to pay more to get it. Those who don't want different buy from the commodity contractors who sell on price.


Read more in EIN from Shawn McCadden:

How Contractors Can Build and Protect Their Brand Reputation
3 Ways To Get Fewer Leads But Close More Remodeling Sales
Don’t Underestimate Your Estimating System’s Potential
Tips on Ball Park Pricing and Charging for Estimates
Is A Contractor Really a Salesperson If He or She Hits Send?
3 Ways To Get Fewer Leads But Close More Remodeling Sales
3 Simple Steps to Covering an Employee's Non-Productive Time
Setting the Example: Getting Employees to Think Like Owners
Comparing Contractor Mark-ups Can Be Pointless and Very Risky
Don't Put Your Business At Risk By Guessing At What Mark-up
Simple Profit Sharing Plan for Contractors


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ABB RoboticsABB Robotics is driving automation in the construction industry with new robotic automation solutions to address key challenges, including the need for more affordable and environmentally friendly housing and to reduce the environmental impact of construction, amidst a labor and skills shortage.

Robotic automation offers huge potential to enhance productivity, efficiency and manufacturing flexibility throughout the construction industry, including automating the fabrication of modular homes and building components off-site, robotic welding and material handling on building sites and robot 3D printing of houses and customized structures. 



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Canadian Electrical Contractor Discussion Group: Can You Count the Deficiencies?

EIN CECD 400Have you ever been called to fix the work of a 'handyman'?

"Was supposedly done by a"certified ' electrician....told the homeowner that he got a $266 permit....no record at TSBC. Can you count the deficiencies?"

"There is a second panel change in the triplex also.......even more deficiencies. Think the guy was a glorified handyman. Ones not obvious: 240 BB heat hooked up 120....drier on 2p20....range on 2p50....water heater fed with 2c14 Bx on 2p15."

Go HERE to join the discussion

 


 

Smart GridHarnessing Canada’s immense clean energy resources requires transformational investments to modernize our electricity grid. The Government of Canada is investing in renewable energy and upgrading the electricity grid to make clean, affordable electricity options more accessible in communities across Canada.

The Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr., Minister of Natural Resources, today launched a $964-million program to support smart renewable energy and grid modernization projects that will lower emissions by investing in clean energy technologies, like wind, solar, storage, hydro, geothermal and tidal.

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Trilliant Partners with the City of CowansvilleThe City of Cowansville in south-central Quebec is the largest city in the Brome-Missisquoi region, with more than 15,000 residents. Despite being a smaller-sized city, it is known as an economic and industrial hub.

It also has a strong focus on innovation and efficiency — as demonstrated by decisions such as the one it made in 2017 to use beet juice to help combat icy winter roads, allowing the City to reduce the amount of salt it was using, thereby saving money and decreasing the impact on the environment. 

 

 

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Keith SonesBy Keith Sones

The writing was on the wall.  The closures would happen. But a lot of people were upset, and I was one of them. 

In the early 2000s, my family and I were living in a mainly rural (at least by city dweller standards) valley in south central British Columbia.  The West Kootenay region is known for its diverse outdoor recreation activities and as a great place to raise a family.  It has a proud industrial history, evidenced through the longstanding pulp mill, a massive lead zinc smelter a few miles away and several hydroelectric dams, all of it within spitting distance of the mighty Columbia River. 

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Lumenquad New VersionsLumenpulse has announced the release of two additional smaller sizes of the Lumenquad, a rectilinear projector for both outdoor and indoor environments. Developed for architectural applications such as lighting landscapes, highlighting details, pathways and monuments, the Lumenquad Small and Medium are compact, low-wattage, high-performance projectors, complementing the two existing products in the family.

The Lumenquad Small and Medium are the latest additions to a family of sleek, elegant, high-performance projectors that has already been validated with honours, including recognition in the PIA Awards in 2019, together with a Lux Awards for Exterior Luminaire of the Year in 2019. 

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Wiha Lineman's Pliers and CrimpersWiha Insulated SoftFinish® Cushion Grip Pliers and Cutters are the standard for premium quality featuring ergonomic cushion grip handles for comfort and control, dual durometer construction for long-lasting durability, and handles directly molded to the tool steel for a permanent bond.

The grips feature a slip guard handle design for added protection at the front-end and raised rear-finger steps for easy opening at the back-end. Wiha Insulated SoftFinish® Cushion Grip Pliers and Cutters consist of premium quality tool steel for strength and durability and induction hardened cutting edges and jaws for superior sharpness and longevity. 

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eLumigen Poultry Lamps - 2000K, 3000K & 5000KIdeal for rough service applications, the A19 & PAR Series are engineered for high efficiency, vibration resistance, shatter-resistance, elevated heat environments, and wet locations. These dimmable LED Lamps help reduce energy costs, labor costs, and the headaches of frequent lamp changes in tough applications.

eLumigen employs a unique 21-point validation process that goes above and beyond industry standards. Our lamps have been tested to survive levels of vibration exceeding 20G forces. Our unique temperature foldback design improves both safety and thermal management of our lamps. 

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House of Electrical SuppliesFrom small construction to sophisticated industrial projects, House of Electrical Supplies has been servicing clients in the industrial, OEM, entertainment, and construction markets across the Greater Toronto Area for just over 40 years. The company has earned a reputation for providing a high-quality customer experience.

As per President Austin Brennan, their experienced and knowledgeable team can be depended upon in any situation to deliver quick and efficient service. On top of their product solutions — ranging from electrical, automation, safety, lighting and portable power distribution — 

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