5 Ways You Are Scaring Your Clients – Business Strategy 101

Your business strategy should be all about adding value to your clients. 

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If you are not adding value – then what are you charging your clients for?

In the home inspecting world there are many unknowns.

There is a lot that you cannot see.

As a home inspector, your job is to offer your professional opinion on the visible condition of the systems and components of the home at the time of the inspection.

QUIT putting conjecture into your reports – you are scaring your client!

A LOT of you are very good at this:

  • “Possible water intrusion around the chimney…”
  • “There may be water penetration in the crawl space…”
  • “Possible condensation on the roof sheathing…”
  • “The roof may be nearing the end of it’s useful life.”
  • “There may be old wiring in the walls…”

It all comes back to the inspector covering their butt.

It either is or isn’t.

LEARN to tell the difference.

Develop a business strategy that ADDS VALUE to your client.

5 Ways You are Scaring Your Clients and NOT adding value = BAD BUSINESS STRATEGY:

  1. Good Business Strategy Means NOT creating more questions than you answer.  When you use verbage like “possible” or “probable” – you create questions.  Use words that are more definitive like “observed” or “it appears”.  This type of verbiage tells the client that you actually saw something – when you use “possible” or “probable” you are entering into conjecture as to whether or not the condition actually exists.  IF YOU DO NOT ACTUALLY SEE evidence of something – you shouldn’t be commenting on it.  You can inform your client about what you cannot see – like “limited visibility in the basement due to storage items.”  BUT DON’T STATE – “most basements have at least some water intrusion, possible water intrusion in the basement.”
  2. Good Business Strategy does not overstate the condition.  Report the facts on what you see.  Do not offer any further conjecture…”it could be this”, or “it could be that”.  If there is no concrete evidence why a defect has developed, you can say to the client: “there are many things that could have caused this condition and it is beyond my omniscience to postulate on the cause.” – or something close to that : )  Do NOT EVER make a mountain out of a molehill…if you do this unknowingly, I hope that someone can tell you before it causes real damage to your business reputation.  If you do this on purpose to “enhance” your expertise, then shame on you.  You do not need to justify the fees that you charge by making it seem that you have found all these “earth-ending-catastrophies-waiting-to-happen-you-are-so-lucky-to-have-hired-me” things!
  3. Good Business Strategy means not trying to explain the cause.  Your clients will always want to know the why.  “Why did this happen?”  “Why did they do it this way?”  In most cases, you are not going to know the “why”.  SO DON’T go postulating on things you DO NOT KNOW!  I know you want to be able to offer them some sound answers – but the fact of the situation is that you DO NOT know and you are only offering your professional guess…and professional guesses are a layman’s fact! Click here to tweet that.
  4. Good Business Strategy means not expounding on things you don’t know or fully understand.  If someone asks you a question about something you really don’t know about…stop right there – be honest and tell them you do not know the answer to that question and you will research it and get back to them on it.  THEN go home and research it as quickly and thoroughly as you can.  Provide them some guidance from a knowledge base.  If you go ahead and try to offer some B.S. – that is not good…people can quickly smell B.S. when they hear it!
  5. Good Business Strategy involves not talking and listening to your client.  Stop talking.  Listen to your client.  Allow them to tell you their questions.  Answer them.  When you do all the talking, your ignorance shows and your clients become uncomfortable.

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Want good business strategy?

  • The whole world is full of things you cannot see and understand and it becomes very scary…don’t make your world scary – people won’t like your world!
  • Offer precise answers.
  • Stop talking and start listening.
  • Watch your business grow!

How do you help your clients?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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