How To Manage Your Customers Better

Hands up if you’ve had a miscommunication with a customer that’s ended up costing you money!

Is there anybody out there without their hand up?

Just a few liars, right?

It happens all the time and tradies are notorious for it. 

I had a very minor incident of it on Tuesday.  

I took my car for a service.

He did the service and said I had to wait for the part to come in so he could fix the rattle in the steering column.

Something about a rubber thing.

He also said something about spark plugs and a fuel filter that should’ve been done at the last service but wasn’t.

So I heard, “I’ve done your service and I’ve put new spark plugs in and changed the fuel filter. I’ll order the rubber thing, come in again next Tuesday and I’ll fix it.’

I turn up next Tuesday to find he’s now put in new spark plugs and a fuel filter but the rubber thing isn’t here yet. I have a $700 bill I wasn’t expecting and my fucking car still clanks like a ghost rattling its chains.

So what happened?

Who’s at fault here?

Both of us, obviously, because that’s how life works. 

A slight miscommunication occurred and I took it on the chin as my misunderstanding.

But customers are not always that obliging, are they?

Sometimes when a misunderstanding like this occurs and they’re up for more cost than they thought, customers get the sh*!s and blame you, and even try to make you take responsibility and pay for it or share the cost.

Who’s been there?


So what to do to avoid miscommunication?

The answer is one you all know;

  1. Make sure you’re clear
  2. Make sure they understood
  3. Confirm in writing
  4. Make them acknowledge in writing that this is how we both see it

Now, there’s no argument. It’s written and accepted.

This works for quotes.

It works for variations (your job management system has a function exactly for this).

It works for changes to a schedule or agreements about payments or selections.

I was taught early in my career to follow up any verbal discussion (phone or meeting) with an email saying, ‘This is what we’ve agreed, this is what I’m doing, this is what you’re doing.’

It’s the same thing.

If you’re thinking, ‘This sounds like a ball-ache, I haven’t got time’, you’re the problem here. 

You’re causing yourself unnecessary problems and costing yourself unnecessary money by not bothering to make sure you and your customer see something the same way.

Communication (and communication discipline) and customer management are business skills you need to master if you’re going to build your business properly.

A business built properly is much more pleasant to own.

Book a Moneymaker Call and we’ll talk about how my coaching program can help you build your business properly.

There are four ways you can engage with me:

1. Subscribe to these emails and get them once a week in your inbox so you never miss a video from me.

2. Join the Trades Business Toolshed Facebook Group where you can watch these videos, ask me questions or talk to your peers.

3. Attend my next Tradie Profit Webinar.

4. Book yourself a 10-minute chat with me. We’ll talk about whether coaching is right for you now and if it is, we’ll go further into the process before you have to make your mind up.

See you later.

Click here to book a money maker call with Jon.