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Image from Wikipedia AntiProverbs According to the page antiproverbs are also known as perverbs and are transformations of proverbs for humorous effect

40 HVAC Contracting Business Proverbs to Live By

April 11, 2014
You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink ... A proverb that has been heard for at least two centuries. They say that learning proverbs can also help you to understand the way  people in English-speaking cultures think about the world. Matt Michel offers 40 proverbs that can help you help hour residential HVAC contracting business travel the road to success.

It's good to know the really common English proverbs because you hear them come up in conversation all the time. Sometimes people say the entire proverb to give advice to a friend. More often, someone will say just part of a proverb like this:

    You know what they say: when the going gets tough...

So I've created 40 "new" proverbs to help HVAC contractors be motivated to do the things necessary to be more than successful. I hope you find these useful:

  • High income salespeople create wealthy owners.
  • A contractor’s single most effective advertising effort is a well-designed truck identification program.
  • Investing in someone else’s brand is like depositing money in someone else’s bank account.
  • Learning the hard way is expensive tuition.
  • A contractor’s most lucrative business opportunities lie within five miles of his shop.
  • A business owner who fails to read the trade press is no better off than an illiterate.
  • By himself, the most experienced contractor is still less experienced than a group of his peers.
  • The replacements you reap come from the service you sow.
  • The contractor who cuts corners eventually cuts off his own legs.
  • The worst time to cut marketing is when it becomes more difficult to attract a customer.
  • A contractor cannot save his way to prosperity.

  • There’s no sin in profit and no virtue in bankruptcy.
  • Hiring technicians from competitors is like hiring a competitor’s bad habits.
  • The contractor who waits for the off-season to start marketing has waited too long.
  • A poor leader blames his people.
  • The business that cannot operate without the owner, cannot be sold without the owner.
  • Motivation, like bathing, is necessary on a regular basis.
  • The best time to start a service agreement program is when the business is formed.  The next best time is right now.
  • Fail to price for profit and you succeed in subsidizing your customers.
  • Money may not buy happiness, but it will make payroll.
  • Any business not growing is stagnating or dying.

  • Co-workers cannot treat customers better than the owner treats them.
  • Contractors with cash in the bank sleep well at night.
  • Any business coasting is headed downhill.
  • It is better to emulate successful contractors than to envy them.
  • The foolish contractor looks to a non-profit for ways to make a profit.
  • A contractor’s wealth can never exceed the value of the service he provides.
  • Only contractors who can admit their mistakes will learn from them.
  • It is easier to turn a wrench than it is to turn a profit.
  • Labor is a contractor’s most perishable commodity.
  • Customer churn is a contractor’s greatest marketing cost.

  • People cannot see cannot see service before it is consumed so they judge your company based on the things they can see.
  • Customers are not always right, but they are still customers.
  • Some  people expect too much.  Others want to pay too little. Thus, not everyone is your customer.
  • A skilled technician lacking interpersonal skills is a poor technician.
  • Most contracting business failures are the result of self-inflicted wounds.
  • Change is inevitable, so embrace the inevitable.
  • Only people who can afford to pay twice can afford cheap solutions.
  • A contractor’s most salable asset is its customer base.
  • Few contractors own businesses.  Most own jobs that own them.

Achieve your business goals faster with the Service Nation Alliance, brought to you by the people who created the Service Roundtable.  Call 877.262.3341 for more information about our exclusive territories.

About the Author

Matt Michel | Chief Executive Officer

Matt Michel was a co-founder and CEO of the Service Roundtable (ServiceRoundtable.com). The Service Roundtable is an organization founded to help contractors improve their sales, marketing, operations, and profitability. The Service Nation Alliance is a part of this overall organization. Matt was inducted into the Contracting Business HVAC Hall of Fame in 2015. He is now an author and rancher.