Archive for the ‘Ethics’ Category

Honesty is the Best Policy

Author: Blake Linnekin

Seems like a simple statement, something that most of us were probably told by our parents many years ago.  The problem is many forget about it along the way or just stop caring to believe it or act it out.  Many tree service professionals run there business by it; however, some by the complete opposite.  Some companies may be caught in between.  Companies trying to go out and do the right thing, but end up “stretching the truth” in order to get by.  What I have always found is that you really are better off going by that old saying our parents all taught us.  There are two areas I have really seen in this area that companies get caught up in.  The first is overselling to get a job and the second is related to the size of the company.

Don’t overpromise and underdeliver.  Everyone wants to have the best salesperson working for them or be the best salesperson.  Close the most jobs, have a high job price, be the best company.  Know that you can’t have every job you go to.  Some you will get and some will go to a competitor.  There is not yet, nor will there be one monopoloy tree service.  What customers want to know more than anything is that they are not going to get ripped off.  After all, who wants to think they have been taken advantage of.  Salespeople need to tell the customer what is really going to happen.  If the job requires equipment going through the yard, tell the customer what it is going to do to the yard.  If you know laying plywood down isn’t going to cut it, tell your customer.  We all are aware that dropping pieces of that 30″ diameter oak is going to leave more than a little divit in the grass.  Let your customer decide to pay extra for everything to be hand carried out or tell them what it will really do to the yard.  Setting your customers expectations are what they really want.  Most customers would rather know up front what they are getting than find out after the job is complete that you saved them some money they would have been ok spending had they been told the truth in the first place. 

Larger companies have the advantage of already having gone through the struggles and having the bankroleto make sure everything is done by the book.  That doesn’t mean that there is no room for smaller companies too.  Smaller companies still have a great marketplace and can coexist with the big companies.  Be honest with your customers and tell them what you are capable of.  Don’t try to be something that you are not. 

Contractors want respect from their clients but remember respect should be earned, not given.  Our whole industry needs to be honest with our customers so we can make this industry better.