Are you judged to be a rip off or screwing the industry?

Wherever plumbers hang out, the problem of pricing a particular job, or hourly rates is bound to be a common topic of debate, and has been for the 3 decades I've been in the plumbing industry, and unfortunately, there's no sign of it ending any time soon.

It's not uncommon, on various plumbing Facebook pages or anywhere plumbers gather, for debates to become quite heated over who is charging what and where.

One of the things I find truly amazing though....is that plumbers who are judged to be charging (too much) are considered rip off plumbers, and the plumbers who are judged to be undercharging are accused of screwing over the plumbing industry. 

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Why Do You Do Things That Way?

Have you ever stopped to think about why you do something a certain way? 

Is it because that's how you were taught by your Dad, your Mum, your 6th Grade Teacher?  Did your Tafe teacher or your Boss teach you something that can only be done 'this' way?

Well I certainly never stopped to think about this... who's got the time right? 

We just do stuff this way because that's what we know and that's how it's always been done....

So one day a mentor of ours talked about "the Why of everything you do".  And he told us the 'Ham' Story - have you heard this one before, because it was one of those light bulb moments when I heard it...

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Are you unknowingly giving your customers 'the bird'?

Ok, sounds dramatic, but what impression do you leave your customers or prospective customers with?

And I'm not talking about the usual 'on the job' must-do's (like clean boots, tidy mats, looking your customer in the eye when talking to them, not smelling like an ashtray etc).....

NO, I'm talking about the little things that you may NOT be doing in the back end. Like, not having an automated 'immediate' response to their emails or facebook messages....

AND BEFORE YOU ROLL YOUR EYES AND SWITCH OFF (hey I live with a Tradie - I know that this stuff is boring as hell to you guys....)..... BUT....

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I Can't Put My Prices up because I'll Lose Customers.....

It's the conversation you have in your head all the time right?

Well, you're not alone.  It's a common thought across all Trades.... and it will STOP you from having a successful business.

But why do we all think like that, why do we have these negative, business crippling thoughts?

...because your MONEY MINDSET SUCKS! 

Yes, you heard me..... there really is such a thing as.....

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Why do 80% of Home Maintenance Service Businesses Fail within the first 5 years?

Because the typical Tradesman decides, in his wisdom, that he KNOWS all there is to know about running a business. 

He knows all there is to know about Plumbing, Electrical, Painting or whichever industry he's in, so naturally that makes him qualified to start his own business. 

Let's face it the thought of becoming your own boss, taking control of your future, becoming the master of your own destiny all sounds pretty awesome right? 

So what happened - why doesn't it always work out that way.  Because many of you struggle to see the business as a 'business', instead you tend to view it as a job.  (HMMMM, a bit like the one you left......?)

You need to learn the difference between.....

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Why Online Reviews Are The New “Word Of Mouth” For Your Business

The Dangers of “Word of Mouth”

As a local plumbing business owner, you might be tempted to think that you really don’t need to put a lot of effort into managing your online reputation, but that could be a very dangerous assumption.

You might think, "What's the point" as many of your customers come through “word of mouth.”

But recent research shows, reputation management and marketing has become super important for sustainability and growth over the past few years.  Why? Because your customers now search online for ratings and reviews when choosing any local business or tradie.

Whether or not you like or use online reviews personally, they must become a major part of your marketing strategy.

Customers love online reviews, and they....

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Saving Your Way To Success

I get it.  Most people are advised to save money.  

TV shows bring on special guests to teach you how to save a few hundred dollars each year by scouring letterbox brochures and internet specials. Beat them at their own game they tell you. 

Hmmmm, that may be ok if you have a job with a set income every week......

But you don't.  You have a business! Not a job!

They're not the same.......

No-one saved themselves to success, it doesn't happen.

I'm going to use buying your 1st property as an example. How long do you think it would take.....

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What's In a Name?

I've got a question for you - do you know why you called your plumbing business the name you did?

It fascinates me how many plumbers (and other tradies too) are calling themselves similar names! 

Before my best friend google entered all our lives, and it's enabler - the internet, it probably didn't really matter if you had a similar business name to someone in another region or state.

But IT MATTERS NOW!!!!  

So why are so many tradies thinking they're really smart by changing up the spelling slightly or one little word (like 'the' or 'and') and grabbing that name they like.   But without giving a what-for to the other 50 similar names on the internet.

DO NOT REGISTER YOUR.......

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You're a Good Plumber....but you hate the Paperwork side of the business!!

Do you sometimes get the feeling that your business is running you?

But you know deep down this is just wrong....you'd be in a much better place if you were in full control of the business.

Do you ever wish someone could show you exactly how to get from where you are now.....to where you want to be?

Well....good news....now you can.

Just by following a step by step system you can change your business, and your life, as fast as it can be implemented in your business.

My own business was set up in exactly the same way, and had....

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But I'm really busy - I must be making money?

It's 2am in the morning, you're in bed….. awake, and you're thinking……..

"Hope that bloody builder pays me today or I won’t be able to pay my Reece account, that's already overdue!….. "

You've been chasing the payment for weeks. You'd love to tell the builder what you think of him - like he can stick his job where the sun don’t shine….but……you’ve already started the next job for him and you're still owed thousands of $$$$ from the last job you did for him!!!  

You feel stuck, and you’ve got this sick feeling in your gut that doesn't go away.  Your life seems to revolve around the constant thoughts that fill your mind:  

  • When will the money from that job clear in my account? 
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I'll Do It Later

Some will call this time management.

Some will call it an excuse not to do something you know you need too.

Time management is something you tell yourself you need to get better at, so you can get the stuff done you keep putting off.

Often time management is used as an excuse to justify your procrastination about doing something you know, you must do, deep down, to improve your current situation.

The truth is, the richest and most successful plumber in the world has 24hrs a day to get stuff done!  That's exactly the same 24 hrs you have to get stuff done.

The major difference between the successful plumber and the plumber just getting by each week, is the

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A Penny Saved Is A Penny Earnt!

OR is it?

Many of us grew up in households or have had relatives or friends tell us that a penny saved is a penny earn't.   And sure, if you can find an identical product or service delivered at an identical price, then that may be true.   But what about in Business?  Well, you definitely shouldn't overlook things in your business that you can save money on, in fact I encourage it.  

But is saving money on education and training the best place to start........?

Let's be honest...

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The Best Way To Move Forward is to Let Go of the Things Holding You Back

It's time to remove Billy the Excavator from your supplier list.  Want to know why?

Kevin was on a job that needed an excavator, so he call's in Billy.... 

Billy does the job and then rushes off to his next job.  BUT Kevin needs to know what the excavation costs came too.  He want's to invoice his customer sohe can get paid and get some money in his bank account.  He rings Billy, but Billy's flat out like a lizard drinking and hasn't had time to work out the costs or do up an invoice yet.  So Kevin waits, and waits, and waits.  Now Kevin's customer is getting annoyed because they haven't received an invoice yet..... and worse, the longer it takes.....

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Chasing Money, Phone Calls, Jobs. There's not enough hours in the day!

And what about all the other questions going through your head?

  • "I don't have time to do all the quotes - how can I get the boys to do them?"
  • "Why do my competitors look like they're doing better than us?"
  • "Would my relationship with my wife be better if I had someone else doing the books?"
  • “How do I get more jobs?”
  • "How do I get staff to fill in jobcards with better descriptions than 'Cleared blocked drain'?"
  • "How do I keep enough cash in......
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The Plumber Who Couldn't Fix It

Do you sometimes feel damned if you do and damned if you don't?

You do a short term band aid fix for a client who says they're broke, only to get a call a week later to say the band aid fix hasn't worked and they expect you to fix it properly for free!

Or

You offer the best long term solution, only to be told you're too expensive and not get the job. Customer says Backyard Benny down the road will do it for peanuts and a beer!

Yep......Sometimes you're damned if you do and damned if you don't! And both can be bad for your business.

Every time you, or your plumbers, do a job for your customer you'll be remembered in one of two ways....

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What Type of Plumber Are You?

Do you spend money to make money?

OR

DO you spend as little as possible?

Now I'm not talking about spending your hard earned cash on every new shiny object that comes along..........

BUT.... by spending money in the right area's, it can actually save or make you much more than the money you spend.......

Time is our most precious commodity - you can't make more of it. 

But if you've ever said,...... when I have the time I'll do this,...... or when I have the money I'll do that.....then 

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Why you should be using Plumbing Menu Based Pricing.....

IMAGINE THIS.....

You're out to dinner and the menu has no prices on it, but at the bottom of the page it states all dishes are charged at $150 per hour or part there of, plus materials (food).

You would probably want to ask the waitress how long she thinks the Steak will take to cook, and how long the chips etc will take to make. How much harder do you think the job of the waitress just got?  And imagine the complaints if the steak ended up taking longer to cook than the waitress had told the customer? I reckon the number of price complaints the restaurant gets would be.....

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The $39 blocked drain!!! What's the Customer really getting?

Ok, so I'm not talking about burgers, but rather ads that say one thing and mean another...

I want you to think about this - do you have plumbers in your area advertising ridiculously cheap blocked drains?

How low will some plumbers go?  And what does the poor customer really get?

The low ball marketing for blocked drains started at about $99 a few years ago, and has progressively got.....

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Stop The Scammers! DON'T CLICK ON THE LINKS!

Ok, so I know this is supposed to be Steve having a Rant, but today it's my turn!!!

Who else is OVER the number of Dodgy and Scamming Emails that land in their Inbox?  

This morning I had one from the Federal Courts of Australia telling me I'd been subpoenaed to appear in Court - WHAT THE???  Pretty sure I wasn't spotted riding my pushbike without a helmet..... Or maybe I was overhead telling someone that I wanted to put the kids up for auction on Ebay (well to be fair - it is School Holidays!!!!)

Firstly - how good are these guys getting?  They had the.....

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