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RIGHT CLICK IS BACK! (09 May 2021)

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Handling Customers

  • John Curtis
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11 Apr 2021 09:17 #48143 by John Curtis
Handling Customers was created by John Curtis
I’ve been listening the the ASOG podcast as I’m dealing with the GP a lot more and have picked up some stuff. Yesterday I had one that I don’t think would ever be my customer but I did want to outline the conversation here.

Could I have handled this better?
Was this potential customer unable to convert into a customer?


C: Hi this is. ____ and I want to know how much it’s going to cost to change my spark plugs on a 6 cylinder Lexus? I would do it myself because it’s only a 20 minute job, but I don’t have the tools.

Me: Hi _____, you say you want a quote to change the spark plugs. I want to make sure I provide you with the best service possible so let me ask you a question. Are you wanting the spark plugs changed as preventative maintenance or is there a driveability concern with the vehicle -maybe it’s running rough or misfiring?

C: Yes the vehicle is running rough.

Me: okay. I think it would be better for me to diagnose the vehicle and figure out what is causing the engine to run rough. I would thoroughly look at your fueling, air metering, and spark system along with engine mechanical to pinpoint your problem.

C: how much do you charge to diagnose

Me: I charge ___.

C: I’ve already had it diagnosed by “major repair shop chain”. It has misfire codes, a lean code and a code related to the evap system. They gave me a list of everything that it could be. Can you just change the spark plugs for me?

Me: okay. So here’s where we are at. It sounds like they’ve scanned codes for you, which is not diagnosing the vehicle. You said there there is a lean code. I want to let you know that if an engine is running lean that it will not be optimal conditions with proper air fuel mixture to adequately combust which can create your misfire. If it runs lean for too long you may damage your coils. I think it’s best to schedule you for a diagnostics and figure out what is going on with the vehicle and get it running properly. I wouldn’t want to change out those spark plugs for you and the vehicle still be running poorly. Unless you want me to diagnose the vehicle I will have to decline the job because I don’t want you to be upset with me if changing the spark plugs fail to fix the problem.

C: I just want to let you know that you’re asking way too much to look at peoples cars. *hangs up

Making Pressure Differential Sensors (PDA Sensors) for pressure pulse diagnostics.
Currently servicing Central Texas.

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  • Chad
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11 Apr 2021 11:45 - 11 Apr 2021 11:46 #48148 by Chad
Replied by Chad on topic Handling Customers
I don't argue with customer's. I would offer to perform diagnostics that would GUARANTY the repair. If they decline and insist on, merely, changing spark plugs, I would change their spark plugs and note it on the invoice that diagnostics were refused and the plugs were changed as the customer requested. Sometimes, the best way to prove someone wrong is to let them have it their way.

"Knowledge is a weapon. Arm yourself, well, before going to do battle."
"Understanding a question is half an answer."

I have learned more by being wrong, than I have by being right. :)
Last edit: 11 Apr 2021 11:46 by Chad.
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11 Apr 2021 14:21 #48151 by Matt T
Replied by Matt T on topic Handling Customers

John Curtis wrote: Could I have handled this better?


You should've said minimum when you told them your diag fee.

John Curtis wrote: Was this potential customer unable to convert into a customer?


Sounds like a bottom feeding cheapskate you really don't want as a customer. "20 minute job" is a huge red flag.

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12 Apr 2021 12:33 #48175 by Noah
Replied by Noah on topic Handling Customers
I would have offered the diag like you did, and then when they pushed back would have offered to change the plugs with zero warrenty for (at least) one hour labor, plus any gaskets associated with possibly having to remove the intake manifold.
Customer supplied parts= no warrenty
Customer supplied diag = no warrenty

-Seems to me that I could live my life, a lot better than I think I am.
I guess that's why call me The Working Man.-
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12 Apr 2021 19:01 #48183 by John Curtis
Replied by John Curtis on topic Handling Customers

Matt T wrote:

John Curtis wrote: Could I have handled this better?


You should've said minimum when you told them your diag fee.

John Curtis wrote: Was this potential customer unable to convert into a customer?


Sounds like a bottom feeding cheapskate you really don't want as a customer. "20 minute job" is a huge red flag.


I definitely agree as it’s not what I want from a customer. I feel like as Chad and Noah have suggested I maybe should have went that route and let them learn the hard way. It’s a difficult position for me as I don’t have any service advisor experience and I usually work with shops so I don’t have to deal with that kind of stuff.

Making Pressure Differential Sensors (PDA Sensors) for pressure pulse diagnostics.
Currently servicing Central Texas.

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  • Tyler
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17 Apr 2021 13:59 #48281 by Tyler
Replied by Tyler on topic Handling Customers
Little late to the party, but I agree with everyone else. This person was a consumer, not a customer. They might have done you a favor by hanging up. ;)

I’ve been listening the the ASOG podcast as I’m dealing with the GP a lot more and have picked up some stuff.


What do you think of the ASOG podcast? I've been listening to them here and there for a couple months.
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19 Apr 2021 21:00 #48310 by John Curtis
Replied by John Curtis on topic Handling Customers

Tyler wrote: Little late to the party, but I agree with everyone else. This person was a consumer, not a customer. They might have done you a favor by hanging up. ;)

I’ve been listening the the ASOG podcast as I’m dealing with the GP a lot more and have picked up some stuff.


What do you think of the ASOG podcast? I've been listening to them here and there for a couple months.


I think there’s a lot to take away from it and the discussions they have really offer different perspectives than the way that I think about things. I don’t have a “shop” but there’s still a lot that applies to what I do and I may open a shop in the future. I do like the push of being very big on how shop owners should be helping dedicated techs learn and grow.

Making Pressure Differential Sensors (PDA Sensors) for pressure pulse diagnostics.
Currently servicing Central Texas.

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24 Apr 2021 15:02 #48386 by Tyler
Replied by Tyler on topic Handling Customers

John Curtis wrote: I think there’s a lot to take away from it and the discussions they have really offer different perspectives than the way that I think about things. I don’t have a “shop” but there’s still a lot that applies to what I do and I may open a shop in the future. I do like the push of being very big on how shop owners should be helping dedicated techs learn and grow.


Agreed. I'm not a shop owner, but I do like to hear the perspective. I also listen to Remarkable Results for the same reason.

I've really enjoyed the arc ASOG has been on recently with interviewing working technicians. Good stuff. B)

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26 Apr 2021 17:25 #48428 by John Curtis
Replied by John Curtis on topic Handling Customers
That’s a new one for me! I’m going to check that out now. Never heard of it

Making Pressure Differential Sensors (PDA Sensors) for pressure pulse diagnostics.
Currently servicing Central Texas.

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