High profit, routine work and consistent cash flow- I LOVED my regular, contract commercial accounts! But I HATED and DESPISED this all-too-common late night phone call from a tech:
“Steve, Charlie and I’ve been waiting for 45 minutes at Westside Ford and nobody is showing up to unlock the dealership. We’ve called the contact number on our Job Profile form and no one is answering. Whadya want us to do?” GRRRRR!
Even worse, when you have to call the customer for each routine service you become an “irritation”. And as an irritation you simply won’t keep the account long! So you need to …
GET THE KEY! However, many commercial accounts will be reluctant to give you a key, card code, etc. So here is Four Step “Key to the Key” System! (Forgive me!)
#1 When writing up your proposal always include at least three different pricing options with a high priced As Needed “resurrection cleaning” along with at two (or more) lower-priced regular cleaning options. (HERE is a slick way to calculate your commercial pricing.)
NOTE: If I REALLY wanted the account I would occasionally “seal the deal” by offering the initial cleaning at the lower contract price!
#2 In your proposal call your discounted prices by the term “Open Access” as in “Monthly Open Access cleaning”. (Don’t make a big deal out of this phrase.)
#3 Upon proposal approval walk the job with your contact as you fill out the Commercial Job Profile.
#4 Shake hands, start to walk away and then spin back to the manager with your “Columbo Close” by casually saying, “Oh … and I’ll need a key.” One of two things will now happen…
A) Your contact will say, “Sure. But I’ll need to get one made.” You now pull out your tabbed “prop keys” and reply, “Actually I was just on my way to the locksmith to get some keys made for other accounts. Just loan me your copy and I’ll have it back to you in half an hour.” (This way you don’t make many fruitless return trips waiting for a key copy!)
B) Or they will say, “Just call us and someone meet you here for each cleaning.” (Don’t fall into this trap– it is the Kiss of Death!) You now reply, “Ouch- you’ll note that seriously discounted price I gave you was for what we call “Open Access” which gives us more flexibility and saves so much hassle and work for your people on meeting us.”
Now SHUT UP and you will be amazed how many people cave in and you GET THE KEY!