Who’s a Good Consultant?

“Who’s a good consultant?” is a question I’m frequently asked by contractors.  This suggests a level of interest and lack of information that would merit a series of consultant profiles.  Here’s the first.

The first consultant reminds me a little of Texas A&M quarterback Johnny Manziel.  For those unfamiliar with college football, Manziel is such a phenomenal talent on the football field he’s been nicknamed “Johnny Football.”  Yet, many know him more because he likes to have fun off the field and occasionally is too open on social media.

The off the field stuff disappears when it’s time to perform.  Few people are more focused on the field than Johnny Football.  If they could have him, few coaches would want anyone else leading their team.

There’s also a side to Manziel that’s seldom reported.  The kid has a big heart and does a lot of charity work that’s gone unmentioned, if not unappreciated by the beneficiaries.

HVAC’s version of Johnny Football is Charlie Greer.  With Tom McCart, Greer was one of the first two retail salespeople in the HVAC industry, working for Ron Smith and John Young at the legendary Modern Air in Fort Myers, FL.

Tom and Charlie pioneered the first retail sales system at Modern.  Later, they both started teaching their system to the industry.  Competitors at Modern, they were also competitors as trainers and consultants.  Tom called his program, “No Secrets.”  Charlie called his, “No Excuses.”

Despite their rivalry, Charlie was one of the first people Tom called when he was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease).  According to Tom’s widow, Diane, Charlie dropped everything and rushed over, asking how he could help.

Throughout McCart’s illness, Charlie was steadfast in support of his old rival.  When called at 2:00 a.m. to help Diane because Tom fell in the bathroom and Diane couldn’t lift him, Charlie rushed over, cleaned up Tom, and got him back to bed.  According to Diane, Charlie performed deeds like this over and over.

Charlie has also been extremely generous to others in need.  I know of at least three acts of surprising generosity performed by Charlie, not because Charlie said anything, but because others did.  “You won’t believe what Charlie Greer did,” they would tell me.

What does this have to do with Charlie as a sales trainer, technician trainer, and business consultant?  I think it’s revealing of his character, which matters when you hire him to teach your company employees.  Remember, they represent your brand and their actions will reflect on you. 

Charlie is a proud thespian (i.e., actor).  He has a dramatic side to himself that he exercises in community theater.  After a theater role required Charlie to wear a rubber suit, I suggested he wear it to Comfortech.  I never thought he would actually do it, but that’s Charlie.  He did and we got a lot of laughs about it.  Charlie, of course, got more than a few strange looks from people not in on the joke.

Charlie’s dramatic aptitude helps him as a trainer.  I’ve seen him play whatever role was required to get the results he needed.  I’ve also seen him quickly decipher both what motivates and what holds back an individual salesperson, providing valuable insight to the sales manager.

Like Johnny Football, Greer gets it done where it counts.  On the playing field, you want him part of your team.  If you can’t get him as a trainer (e.g., he’s currently training upside down… in Sydney, Australia), buy his outstanding “Tec Daddy” DVD training program and play it during your service meetings.  Give your salespeople the “Slacker’s Guide,” which I consider to be a better audio sales training program than anything produced by Brian Tracy, Zig Ziglar, or Tom Hopkins. 

If nothing else, read Charlie’s column in Contracting Business.  He’s in every issue and is one of the magazine’s best read columnists.

I mentioned that Charlie’s training in Australia.  You probably think it seems like a stretch for an Australian company to hire Charlie and fly him half way around the world to do training.  Here’s what Allan Ferguson from Sydney’s Omega Plumbing wrote about Charlie…

Charlie “Tec Daddy” Greer is in my opinion is one of the greatest Service Technician Sales Trainer’s on the planet.

His training sessions and products clearly outline the most definitive set of guidelines for closing more sales and earning the most amount of revenue possible on each and every job. He has had a profound effect on my company and those whom I have introduced to him in Australia.

While Charlie may be an HVAC version of Johnny Football, I hope we NEVER call him Charlie HVAC.

Hurry! The Service Roundtable is giving the first ten people who call our Success Team a FREE copy of Inside Contracting.  Just call 877.262.3341.  There are no strings.  Just call and ask for your copy.

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