Latest from Columns

Photo 16903019 © Skypixel |
Photo 51372886 © Thinglass |

A Service Story

May 16, 2024
Photo 210659396 © Freemanhan2011
Illustration 9227645 © Ashestosky |
Photo 161233010 © Jamesteohart |
Photo 43963025 | Business © Choneschones |

The Residential HVAC Replacement Sales Call, Part 2: Drive Time Preparations

March 20, 2018
Drive time can and should be spent doing something productive to improve every aspect of your life.

Charlie is going to take this entire year to cover his over-the-top procedure he follows when running residential replacement sales calls. This is his second installment.


Drive Time:

If you spend three hours per day driving between calls, you’ll spend 750 hours per year behind the wheel. Over a 30-year time frame, that’s 22,500 hours you’ll spend driving between calls. What are you doing with that time?

Drive time is perhaps biggest, opportunity that people in our field waste. Drive time can and should be spent doing something productive to improve every aspect of your life. You could and should be listening to audio products that will educate and
enlighten you.

You’re in the sales profession. Salesmanship is how you earn your living. You should strive to be as good as it as you possibly can, which means you should be studying and practicing your salesmanship. Now the question is, when and where do you study and practice? You do it in the truck between calls. That’s where I got the majority of my education in sales.

Starting the drive:

After completing a call, at my earliest convenience, I park the vehicle, take out a sheet of paper and draw a line down the center of it. At the top of the left-hand side I write, “What Went Wrong,” and at the top of the right-hand side I write, “What Went Right.” Then I just get brutally honest with myself and write those things down.
I begin my drive practicing presenting the same product I just did on the last call, but trying to do it better. I then listen to an audio book on salesmanship.

You don’t have to spend all your drive time on salesmanship. You can listen to audio books on almost any topic, including:

• Negotiating skills
• Building a healthy marriage
• Child-rearing
• Personal finance
• Spirituality
• Positive-thinking
• Healthy eating habits
• Business skills
• Life planning
• Learning a new language.

Don’t let that time go to waste and don’t do anything to irritate yourself, like listen to sports talk radio or get into arguments on your cell phone.

Creative Visualization:

Did you watch any of the athletes during the Olympics, in the minutes before they compete? They’re usually off by themselves, obviously deep in thought. They are visualizing the upcoming competition.

We are in a highly competitive business, and every sales and service call is a competition. We should do a mental warm-up, otherwise known as creative visualization, just prior to running a call.

About 10 minutes before my estimated time of arrival, I just kind of visualize:

1. Being able to find the address easily
2. The initial introduction going well
3. The customer being cheerful, cooperative and receptive
4. Me projecting confidence, a positive level of expectation and professionalism
5. Me making good eye contact
6. My inspection and evaluation going well
7. My presentation going well
8. The customer listening, believing me, wanting their problems resolved, and buying.

Positive Affirmations:

It’s important to stay positive on the job and to project a positive level of expectations. I do that with positive affirmations. A lot of people’s positive affirmations are long and poetic, which I believe is unnecessary. I keep them simple. Here’s an example of the kind of things I say to myself as I’m falling asleep at night, as I wake up in the morning, whenever I’m feeling a little negative, and on the way to a call:

I’m an excellent salesman. / I’m a good communicator. / I’m successful at what I do. / I am positive. / I am intelligent. / I am wealthy. / I make wise decisions. / I am confident. / I project authority. / I make excellent eye contact. / I accomplish my goals. / I attract wealth. / I feel good about myself. / I feel good about my future. / Everybody buys from me. / People believe me. / People find me interesting. / … and things of that nature.

Listening to sales instruction and practicing your sales presentations while driving between calls keeps you in shape, keeps you focused, and you learn new techniques.

Make the most of your drive time by staying off your phone, turning off the music, and practicing your salesmanship, and you’ll make more money and improve every aspect of your life.