Tech Soft Skills Part 2

November 22, 2004

Simple Steps to Improve Technician Soft Skills

By: Matt Michel

Handling the Technicians
How do you handle it when a technician considers it more important to wear an earring than to work at your company? If your policy is no jewelry, he can either take it off while he’s on the clock or he can find a company that will accept it. You’re setting the rules of work. By choosing to wear the earring, the technician is choosing to work elsewhere.

Once when an installer working for me insisted on wearing an earring, I told him that I was sorry to hear he wanted to quit. He looked at me funny and said he wasn’t quitting.

I informed him that the rule is “no jewelry” and by wearing the earring, he was saying he didn’t want to work for us anymore. He stomped off in a huff. This was hard because we were in the middle of a job and really needed this guy. Fortunately, he showed back up a couple of hours later without the earring.

Does good grooming improve a technician’s soft skills? I think it does. You aren’t supposed to judge a book by its cover, but everyone does.

I used to do work for several major consumer magazines. They tested as many as 30 different covers for an upcoming issue to find which one was most intriguing and appealing. This company knew that people judged their magazines and made purchase decisions based entirely on the cover.

If your technicians are well groomed, the stage is set for acceptance on the part of the consumer. This is important because most consumers view service companies cynically. They’ve become jaded. You need everything you can working in your favor.

Good grooming won’t make a technician a better mechanic, but it’s not all that difficult and it will improve the odds that homeowners will accept him and his recommendations.

Source: Comanche Marketing. Reprinted by permission.
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Copyright © 2003 Matt Michel

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