Episode 93 – Do You Actually Know What You’re Selling
Episode 93 – Do You Actually Know What You’re Selling |
Good morning folks out there. This is the "Builders Business Success Podcast." The "Builders Business Success Podcast" is the construction business podcast. And I'd like to be your construction business coach, or builder's coach, however you would like to put it.
If you've never seen this before, which I highly doubt, if you're in The Builders ToolShed, our app. I'm Mick Hawes, I'll be the host for the episode. The purpose of the podcast is really to address the costly, common problems experienced by pretty much every builder.
And we've got a group of builders called Builders Business Blackbelt, where we're forever experimenting with new processes to overcome those problems, and we field test them. And then a lot of the results, the solutions are then broadcast through the podcast. So it's absolutely focused just on builders.
This episode is Episode 93 of the new format, and the format's changed a little bit. We've moved studios, we were just over there, now we're here, for various reasons. And we've had to overcome a few technical issues.
Hopefully, those technical issues have been overcome, because last last week, the Live, we lost audio and all sorts of things. So hopefully you can hear and all is good in this episode.
In this Episode 93, the question is, do you actually know what you are selling? Do you know what your product is?
And I ask the question because I speak to so many builders who really don't, and the focus is in the wrong spot. And when you know what it is, when you genuinely know what your product is, everything changes, everything becomes easier, everything becomes more fun, it becomes more profitable.
You have more time for yourself, your business has more meaning, it's just so much more enjoyable. And so that's what the focus of this episode is on, to really help you understand and what your product is, and when you change it, you'll enjoy the benefits of that.
And of course, in this episode, we're also got an "Idea of The Week," in this "Idea of The Week," it's a little bit of kit that will increase your effectiveness, make you feel better. It may, depending on your perspective, it may even make you look good. So that will be something to look forward to.
The New Book!
So, oh, just before we do get on with it, I need to remind you about this, because this has just been released. It's called "The Successful Builders Toolkit."
It's our brand new book. It only just been released. It sells for $29.95. If you're on here Live, I've put a link in the chat. So you can just click that link. If you're not here Live, here's something that you can do, you can scan this QR code.
So you can just get your phone out, put the camera on, depending on the phone it will do it automatically. Others, you you've gotta press the screen with the little yellow button, and it will take you to the page where you can get yourself a copy of "The Successful Builders Toolkit."
The $29.95 includes postage, all that. So that's delivered to you. And also if you wanna learn how you can get a free copy of that, if you don't wanna pay, if you want a free copy, I'm gonna tell you how you can get a copy at the end of the podcast.
Transcription of the show!
So let's go, the whole focus of this podcast, or this episode of the podcast, if I get my page to turn, but it won't turn for some reason. Excellent. So we've got another technical issue. There we go, I've got it to work. Unbelievable.
What do most builders think their product is? From all my conversations, it's what they build. So it's the extension, it's the renovation, it's the new home, whatever it might be.
And then it's no, no, it's more than that, it's the quality of it. And it's none of those things, those things are an expectation, they're not the product, they're not what your customer is after.
Yes, of course, they're after a new home. But the reason that they're after a new home is really what they want your help with. Even though most of your clients will never ever express this, they'll never say this, but at a subconscious level that is what they're after.
And this is why this is a magic topic, this is why this can be an absolute game changer, because the customer does want a certain thing, but they're not really realizing it from a conscious point of view, it is a subconscious thing.
And if you recognize that, and you deliver what they're genuinely after at a subconscious level, all of a sudden you become very, very attractive, you become the builder of choice, because there is something about you that they're really, really connected to, there's something about you that they trust.
One of the most important ways to build trust, rapport, connection, is having a person feel that you genuinely understand from their perspective. And it's not a conscious thing, it's just a subconscious, subliminal thing.
And I'm sure that you've met somebody for the first time, sometime in your life, and you just got on like a house in fire. You've also met other people that you tried to get on with, but no matter what happened you couldn't get on with, there is this magic nonverbal connection that people have.
Most of the time it is when people are communicating on the same level and they feel understood. So thinking that your product is the house, the renovation, that you are building, the extension, whatever it is, thinking that that is your product is a mistake.
And even when you're thinking, the quality, that's your product, that's a mistake also. Because here's why, the quality and the structure that you create is an expectation.
It's just what they expect, they can't do it themselves, so they're getting you to do it. But the builder's product is this, it is how you make your customers feel, and also how you make your prospects feel.
Don't forget that, that's probably the most important part in the process in the beginning, is how you make your prospects feel. Because when you first meet your prospect, there isn't this trust, there isn't this connection.
Even if they've been recommended to you by somebody close to you, that's a good start, because now you are tapping in to the trust that is already created between this new prospect and the person that recommended them.
So you're tapping into that trust, so that's a good start.
But once they meet you and go through your process, it's all new. So you're kind of starting from scratch again, and you've gotta build that connection. you've gotta build that rapport. And it is how you make your prospect feel at that point, that can change that whole process.
Now, in Builders Business Blackbelt, and in fact, in the blueprint program, we teach our members, the Qualification Process, it's called the Quality Client Pathway. And it started life out as a Qualification Process, where the real purpose of it was to just kick people out that weren't appropriate.
So they didn't waste your time, and so on and so forth. Now, that's all well and good, but when we implemented that, one of the downsides of the process was, if we just had to spend a bit more time connecting with the people, they would've become a good client, but we were just looking at how they were responding and how they were interacting right in those early days.
And if they weren't the right type of person, bang, the system would kick them out. But over to time, we figured out that our Qualification Process really needed to be an education process.
And when people understood the best way to go through the process, to team up with the builder, how to find the right builder, how to behave to be a great client for the builder so the builder could, instead of dealing with all of these challenges, that a customer that doesn't behave as they should, the builder is fixing, trying to fix all of those, their eye is off what they should be doing.
And so we created an education process that allowed, once the prospect understood that if they just changed their behavior and let the builder do what they were good at and we came together as a team, it would be the best outcome.
They would get the most value for their money, and they would have a really, really enjoyable experience.
So the Qualified Process, Version 2 came about. But then we came up with the challenge that, hang on, I'm doing my best to explain what the changes are, that the client needs to make, or the prospect needs to make to make this work and I'm not hitting the mark.
Then the light bulb came on, that we need to add some skills to this, we need to add some communication skills, some listening skills, because there are a couple of pre-suppositions that you need to understand if you are going to make this work and be a great communicator.
And that is, well, one of them is that people listen to those who listen to them. There's a really great book, it's an old book now by Hugh Mackay, it's called, "Why People Don't Listen." Another great resource for this sort of thing is habit five in "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People," by Stephen Covey.
And that chapter is, "First Seek to Understand Then to Be Understood." And we don't get taught this in school, we think that if we're not getting our message across, we need to speak slower or more loudly, or enunciate or something.
But the real key to being listened to is to become a master listener. And when we apply those skills and that training to Qualified Process, it took on a whole new value, it became so much more powerful because, okay, now, we've got an education process, but people weren't always listening to the information, so they weren't getting educated.
So we then went, okay, we've gotta understand where they're coming from, we've gotta get confirmation from them, that we understand their fears, their frustrations, their wants their aspirations, and there's a whole lot to this which you can get by going to those resources I just talked about.
I mean, obviously we teach it in Blackbelt and blueprint, but you can get that information by reading those books and teaching yourself the art of becoming what we'd call a level five listener, or master listener.
When you do that, when that person genuinely feels that their fears, their frustrations, their wants, their desires or aspirations have been understood by you, guess what they then want to do? First seek to understand then to be understood.
They will want to be guided by you. And at the base, when I started this conversation in this podcast, I was saying that the product isn't what most builders think it is, which is the building or the quality of the building, and it's not even getting a house for the client.
What they really and genuinely want from the builder is to be understood, to be supported, to be guided and to be protected. Like don't ever forget that protected one, because you speak to most clients that have experienced the building industry, and it's just bloody horror story, after horror story, the builder didn't turn up when they said, it was more expensive than what we thought, blah, blah, blah. It's just horror story, after horror story.
And most of that comes from miscommunication between the builder and the client. And if you've got the skill and you've got system and process in your business that allows the client to change their behavior, they don't need to protect themselves anymore.
Because what what's traditionally happening is they don't know you, they don't trust you, so that what they need to do is try and get as much information out of you as possible so they can make the decisions.
Because they can't trust you, you haven't done anything to deserve or earn that trust, but once you do, those protective walls come down, because they now have someone who knows the business.
They've got someone who has the experience, who as the knowledge, but also they believe completely that this builder has their back. So they don't need to protect themselves anymore because you now will do that, they need to be protected.
So when you can do this, when in you have the process, so the Quality Client Pathway, or the Qualification Process, and you have the skill to be able to work that process.
So they feel like they can absolutely trust you and you will protect them, you have their best interests at heart, they become better quality clients. And it's one of the things that we've talked about, it's on our website even, that, do you wanna fill your business with quality clients?
And the problem is, why most builders don't completely fill their business with quality clients, is the way the builder interacts with their prospect and eventually their client. They don't have these processes in place, and they don't have the skill in place to work these processes effectively.
I love hearing stories from our Blackbelt members about-- Even after just the contracts have been signed, so they haven't even dug a hole yet, nothing has happened on site.
And the customer is in tears and not tears of frustration, but tears of happiness and I guess, relief, that they've been able to find somebody and team up with them they can absolutely trust. And the beauty of that is that we are not got this focus on penny pinching anymore, and how do we do it? The cheapest and all of that.
They realize that their builder has the experience and the knowledge and has their back. So they will guide them to be able to get the best part possible outcome for their budget.
And that's another thing, when you can build this trust and bring down those walls where they're protecting themselves, they will tell you what the budget is.
They won't keep a bit of wiggle room in there for contingencies and all that sort of stuff, there will be complete openness and honesty about-- I mean, obviously this is what we'd like to do it for, but this is all we've got, this is all we can get.
And so, you know what the parameters are, and you can help put a project together that will give them the best possible value, the best possible outcome, the majority of their wishes in that project, not necessarily all of them.
And if you've built this rapport and you don't give them everything they want, that will be okay too, because they will absolutely trust that you did the best you could.
Because how many times have you run into a customer, or a prospect at that point, where their budget was nowhere in the same universe as what they wanted, their desires.
And the majority of conversations between builders and clients at that point, doesn't end well, because the builder knows what you can get for the money, the client has a vision of what they want, and this is what their budget is, but they have no reference, they may have been given this price by an architect or a building designer, or a drafts person, but the really knows what things cost.
And so there is this disconnect there. And when we have that conversation traditionally, the builder is basically being accused of being too dear.
So then they'll go somewhere else and try and find a builder that will do it for the price that they believe it can be done for. But then what happens folks? So you know the story, they then find a builder who said, "Yeah, we'll, you know, we'll cut this, that and that. And we can do it for that price."
And it just ends up being a shitfuck, they don't get what they want, they get really frustrated about the process because it's all focused in on price and they still don't have that connection with their builder and have that trust.
And so there's this old saying, you know, it's an old sales training thing from my memory, and it's like, they would say, "People won't remember what you said. People won't remember what you did."
So if you think about this throughout the whole build process, "They don't remember what you said, they don't remember what you did, they will remember forever, how you made them feel."
Okay. And generally, it's those little things that they focus on. Have you ever experienced that? You've done an amazing job, really high quality, you've done it in on time, on budget, whatever.
And sometimes they're still not happy because there are these little things, and that's the secret source with this, is learning how to communicate and being a great observer of people.
And so you can communicate even more effectively and find out really what's on their mind, and they'll open up, and you can fix these little things, you can understand what is really in important to them, and you can surprise them, and do things that through the build process, that just blow their minds.
And again, great having these conversations with our Blackbelt members, with the little surprises that they put in the build process, in Blackbelt, we call it "deliver plus." "Deliver plus" replaces a whole build process for us in Blackbelt. "Deliver" is all about understanding what their expectations are, and at a bare minimum, you deliver on those.
The "plus" are the little surprises, really listening in detail to the conversation about their desires and their passions, and their interests and things like that. And doing little things within the project that are really, really personal.
It doesn't have to cost you a lot of money, it's all about that thought. And like that's in-- We unpack that in this book. In fact, in "The Successful Builders Toolkit," all of this is outlined, that whole process, the whole "deliver plus" process, and the qualify process, it's all in there.
So you've gotta be aware of the little things and to the point, it's that important that in Blackbelt, we make sure that our members put schedules in put place, reminders in place, that various parts through the project, it's now time for a plus, it's now time for a surprise.
And it's those things that get remembered, and also understand that your relationship and the value that that client can bring back into your business doesn't end at handover, it's a whole nother podcast, but the handover experience, and then what happens after handover for the years and years, and years after handover, you still can be offering your past clients value and they will then add value to your business.
And as I say, we'll talk about that in the future, but be aware that it all needs to stem from that start and flow through the build process, where you are always on guard, looking to make sure that you are understanding from their perspective, but not just assuming that you understand, and there's a whole art to it, you get confirmation from your prospect or your client that they feel understood, that's the secret.
The other thing, before we finish this topic is, get your team on board, have these conversations with your team.
It's so much fun having your conversations with your team, when they understand this process, when they understand this paradigm, this idea, and you get them involved in conversations about how we can blow our clients' mind with just extra value and little surprises, and things like that, it becomes a ton of fun.
And you start to recruit the imagination of your team members into how you can do things for your clients, and it can really make a big difference.
So if you want help with any of that, as I said, there's a whole lot more information in the book, in The Builders Toolkit. You can go get yourself a copy. There's a link in the chat, there'll be a link in the description for the replay, if you wanna go get yourself a copy.
And as I said, at the end or the podcast, I'll show you how you can get one for free, if that's what you'd like to do. But if you want any help at all, with anything that I've covered, if you want us to unpack it, if we wanna find out where you are with your business and give you some pointers as to where you need to look and what resources in The Toolshed you need to jump into, to improve this part of your business, you can get personal help. There's a place over here in The Builders ToolShed. It says, "Get Personal Help," just click on that, and it takes you to a form, fill out the form, we can jump on a real quick call and start to guide you, so hope that makes sense.
Idea of the Week
Okay. It is now time for "Idea of The week." We should put some music in here, maybe I'll look at that in the future. But "Idea of The Week," as I said, it's just a little bit of kit.
And it's these things here, not these glasses here, but these glasses here. I've had all sorts of disparaging comments from wearing them in the podcast in the past, Elton John and a few other comments. But what these are, these are Swanies.
And they're blue light-blocking glass. And why am I telling you about this? Because they've been brilliant for me. Now, why aren't I wearing them right now?
Because we've changed where my computers are and all that sort of stuff. And these glasses are tuned to something close, whereas when we're over in the other studio, the computer was further away, and these glasses were tuned so I could see when the computer screen was further away.
If you don't even need glasses, these are still a wonderful bit of kit because-- And I don't wanna go into the science, you can read all about that, but particularly at night, obviously you're not in front of screens, unless you are in front of screens a lot, these are good.
But at nighttime, in the last few hours before you go to bed, wearing something like this, when you're watching TV, or looking at your phone or computer screens, or whatever, these are really good because it changes the biochemistry and starts to put you in a state where you can sleep far more deeply, far more effectively, and of course, better sleep equals better productivity, better sleep equals better decision-making better results, all of that sort of stuff.
So I just have found these to be really, really wonderful from that perspective.
The reason that I'm talking about them is, in the start of the show and the five minute countdown, you'll see one the Swanwick brothers, James Swanwick talking about-- He talks about getting off alcohol and all that sort of stuff, but he's also in business with his brother and they make these over in the United States. He's been on the show.
And what he's done is, he's offered anybody that watches the podcast Inside The Toolshed here, a 15% discount if you wanted to get a pair of these.
There's lots of different models, there's clear ones that don't have this on it, but you'll read about all of the benefits of those on the website.
The website is this here, just get rid of that and do that, and that's the website. Blue light protection. There's all sorts of different models in their collections and so forth. And it is swanwicksleep.com.
We'll put the link in the replay, in the description, so you can just click it and go straight there. But if you want to get a pair and get a 15% off, you just need to put the code "BBB." So three capital B's in as the discount code, and you get 15% off.
Now, James did say, if people buy them, we'd get some sort of a kickback or whatever, and to be completely honest and transparent with you, I just don't do that, I don't like that sort of thing. If I recommend something, I recommend it because I love it, I think it's a good thing.
So I just said, give all of the discount that you can afford to anybody who is in The Toolshed. He said, terrific, so that's why we've got a 15% discount.
Put the code, "BBB" in there and away you go. So that's the "Idea of The Week," get a pair. These are just normal glasses, they got the film on them, not very good at all. These are 10 times better to get rid of the eye strain, and particularly, as I said, wearing them at night, really, really cool.
I just wanna give you a quick reminder before we get out of here, how to maximize the value from The Builders ToolShed. And as I say every week, I need you guys to engage, I need you to ask questions.
Surely you've got questions. What is a question that if you are able to get an answer to that question, it would help your business. Jump in the The ToolShed there, and post that question.
There'll be tons of people in, and they'll be able to give you answers. We're always monitoring, we'll jump in there as well. Also love you to share your wins and lessons. So everybody, if you're in business, you're either winning or you're learning.
It's not wins and losses, it's wins and lessons. If you are not either winning or learning, you need to take a good hard look at yourself in the mirror of truth, because you're not gonna make progress regardless. And if you're not growing, you're dying.
So we'd love you to share those wins. How are you improving with your business? What are you doing in your business that has made a difference?
And then through mistakes, through errors, sometimes through wins, but not as often as through mistakes and errors, we get lessons. And that's really valuable to share that in The ToolShed as well.
Jump in there and share your lessons through your mistakes, through your errors. I mean, apart from anything, if you've made a mistake and it gives us a laugh, at least that's a good thing.
We don't wanna laugh at you, we wanna laugh with you. But you can put those sorts of things in The ToolShed, so everybody can learn from everybody else's experience. And I talk about this all of the time, for everybody to go better, everybody needs to contribute.
So jump in there, ask questions, share your wins and your lessons, and make suggestions. There's a suggestion box in there. What do you wanna see in The ToolShed, jump in there and give us your suggestions.
And we'll do our best to implement that, or introduce that to The ToolShed. As I said, there are a couple of ways to get help, that's one of them.
You can get personal help just by going to the nav section over there, clicking, "Get Personal Help," and fill out a form that gives us a bit of an idea of what you want help with, and we can be prepared before we have a conversation.
The other thing you can do is just jump in the chat, find us in the chat and go, hey, give us a call so we can start to point you in the right direction.
Another thing we'd like is to--
We need your help to make The Builders ToolShed, just the best environment for builders that there is.
So we need your help to find out what that is. If you're posting your questions, if you're posting your challenges in The Toolshed, that's one way. Another way, and we are really grateful for the builders that are in The ToolShed who are doing this, that we jump on a call.
So reach out to us in the chat. So we can jump on a telephone call and really get some specifics about where you're at, where you want to go, what's in the way, so we can point you in the right direction. But also through those conversations, we learn what else needs to go into The ToolShed, to make it the best environment for builders out there.
One final reminder, if you do that, if you jump on a call with us and give us where you want to go, what's in the way, or the conversation where we find that out, and where you are now, and what the specific problems are that you are working on, we'll post you out one of these free of charges.
So we get a $30 book. We'll pay the postages, the whole thing, it lands in your letter box, just through having a conversation, which is gonna be beneficial for your business as well, but it does help us out.
So we stay current and learn what to put into The Builders ToolShed. So you get a free copy by jumping on a call. We've showed you all the ways to do that. So I hope this was beneficial. I hope that it got the thought processes stewing up there about, what is your product, and how you can change that.
And as I said, if you've got any questions, you can pop 'em in the comment section underneath the podcast. Anyway, if you're watching the replay, love to get into a conversation about that.
We'll be back again next Tuesday, 10:00 AM, that's Sydney time. So the East Coast is all on the same time zone now, we're back with you all, we're not out of whack with you. So 10:00 AM Tuesday morning, jump on with us Live.
If you've got any questions, you can whack 'em in the chat. I'm Mick Hawes, so hope this was helpful. I'm with "Builders Business Blackbelt." That is it, bye for now.