6. Sales and presentation skills – To win great jobs takes professionalism, knowledge and confidence. Firms who are awarded more jobs than their competitors are well trained in sales and presentation skills. They show up at the project interview ready to impress with their team rehearsed, dressed like pros and ready to ask for the order. They use photos, charts, CPM schedules, graphs, PowerPoint presentations, customer testimonials, value-added propositions, cost saving ideas, and lots of visual props to get their point across.
7. Right place at the right time – Estimators are more than price givers. They are in the sales business and must spend lots of time with their customers. To be at the right place at the right time, you must be in your customer's office at least once a week. Successful estimators create a relationship of trust with customers by spending time working with them on value engineering ideas, solutions to difficult problems and seeking better ways to build. Are you a price giver or problem solver? Customers want to hire people who solve problems for them and make their life easier and stress free.
8. Referral solicitation program – The easiest way to double your sales is to ask loyal customers for a referral. Referrals don't come often without asking; and when asked, customers will give. A simple checklist is all it takes to remind you to ask. Call your last 10 customers and take them to lunch to thank them for the work. Then, at the end of lunch, ask them for a referral. I guarantee you will get all the work you can handle if you spend more time in sales than you do worrying about ordering door knobs and scheduling your crews.
9. Active in industry & community – Successful companies are seen by everyone, everywhere, all the time. They are active in their industry associations, local charities and community organizations. They serve on boards of directors and give time and money to make things better for the people around them.
10. Cutting edge – Leading companies use the latest tools, techniques and technology to stay ahead of and lead their customers. They show the future to their customers instead of complain about changing. What are you waiting for? What are your competitors doing you should be doing? What can you be the first to use? The longer you wait the farther behind you get.
If you want to increase your chances of winning more than your share of profitable jobs, consider implementing these 10 tips. Make your bid only one small part of the selling process, and join the list of very successful companies.
George Hedley is a professional business coach, popular speaker and best-selling author of "Get Your Business to Work!" and "The Business Success Blueprint For Contractors" available at his online bookstore. He works with business owners to build profitable growing companies. E-mail: email@example.com to request your free copy of "Winning Ways To Win More Work!" or sign up for his free monthly e-newsletter. To hire George to speak, be part of his ongoing BIZCOACH program, or join one of his ongoing Roundtable Peer Groups, call 800-851-8553 or visit www.HardhatPresentations.com.