Door
by Tara Taffera
May 10th, 2012

Nothing Happens Until you Make a Sale

It’s the phrase that immediately popped in my head as I sat down to start this article: “Nothing happens until you make a sale.” I couldn’t remember where I heard it right away but then realized it was from one of my fellow bloggers, Mark Milanese, Milanese Remodeling, who often talks to our readers about sales techniques and methods. He used that very quote in one of his recent blogs, and this idea seems to be the heart of the message Dave Yoho Associate employees spread to attendees of its seminars, such as the Home Improvement Profitability Summit that I attended recently.

If you missed my story on the subject, check it out and for more from the seminar look for the June issue of DWM. So here’s just one way you can get more sales according to David Alan Yoho. He asked attendees how many have a rehash program, and told of one sales person who does rehash business on a Saturday. He invites those homeowners he’d contacted in the past, but to whom he did not make a sale, to come out learn more. On one Saturday he made 19 deals and $250,000 in business, said Yoho.

But the presentations given by Dave Yoho and his son David Alan, talked about so much more than sales and gave everyone from the owners, managers and sales reps in attendance a lot to think about.

For instance, the elder Yoho pointed out that many home improvement companies don’t know their costs thus lose money on a job. On the surface it really seems insane to me that this would be the case but the more I hear about this the more I fear this is true in many cases.

I remember watching the show on Food Network a month or so ago, “Restaurant Impossible,” and couldn’t believe that the restaurant owner had no idea what she paid for food, etc. and the Food Network host of the show had to help her in this area “How could you not know this?” I exclaimed to my accountant husband and he just rolled his eyes as I am sure Yoho is tempted to do on many occasions. How can people not know these figures? But kudos to Yoho for helping companies figure this out.

I was also very encouraged to know that the people in attendance, such as the general manager for a Renewal by Anderson location in central Pennsylvania, attend many of Yoho’s sessions. It is nice to know companies like hers make this a priority—not once but repeatedly.

But even companies like hers can make mistakes, at least in Yoho’s eyes.

For example, he asked companies if they pay their sales reps weekly. When a handful raised their hands he said, “You are making a mistake. If you change to every two weeks you are reducing 26 accounting entries.”

“If you are profit sharing with your sales reps you are making a mistake,” he added.

The seminar included so many great tips for selling and running a window business, that I encourage you to check out the article. And if you don’t believe me, believe the people who posted comments saying that Yoho is right on.

There is one last quote from Yoho that I would like to pass on. I know it’s easier said than done but this week when you are quoting a job try not to base your decisions on what the competition is doing. Consider this quote: “It’s sickening to see how we respond to competition,” said Yoho.

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  1. Digressing a little, I was once told that you can’t make any mistakes before the sale, but you can make several after the sale.
    It all works fine, so long as you own up to the mistakes and follow through with timely corrections. Fixing mistakes properly sends an important message about your company. Customers appreciate timely corrections and will tell their friends.

  2. Great article Tara. Must have been a chockful seminar. Thanks for sharing!

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