The Hard Knock Lessons of HPC
In life, as in business, we learn by doing and following the examples of those who have gone before us. We learn the do and do not’s from each other. Some of us learn by doing, some by listening, some by observing, and others by the T-shirts in the closet and the scar tissue obtained.
In the beginning of Home Performance Contracting (HPC) there were very few leaders to watch, listen to, and learn from. In the last few years this new business market has exploded onto the HVAC business radar and many companies are asking the question? Do I want to be a part of it? Am I willing to make the changes necessary in my business model to adapt to this new opportunity?
I am oft en asked these questions and many times I will reply with an additional question back to them, “Do you prefer to drive your car looking through the front window, which provides a wider view of things to come or do you spend too much of your driving time looking in the rear view mirror?”
Yes, the HPC market is new and scary, because we as individuals have been raised to fear the unknown. Well the HPC markets are no longer the unknown. You have had the opportunities in the last few years to attend many industry events, such as the recent ACCA Annual Conference where specific tracks related to HPC have been presented. You have had the opportunities to visit with great companies who are more than happy to share their knowledge and have had successful transformations in adding HPC to their models.
When adding HPC to your model here are a few items I recommend!
1. Get past your EGO of I am the best. Maybe we were at one time, but that is the rear view mirror version. Times change and we will be better tomorrow at what we do than we were yesterday. Admit it and move forward.
2. You will have to change some of your processes and most importantly you will have to understand there is a different pricing matrix required for HPC. You must understand the difference between overhead cost related to a HPC model of higher labor cost and lower materials cost compared to our typical BOX business of higher materials and lower labor cost. Can these two models be blended together? The answer depends mainly on you, but many companies have done so and many more are learning each day.
3. You will be required to invest in new training, equipment, and sales processes. HPC is not a commodity such as BOXES and must use a consultative and holistic view of the home, building, occupants’ needs, and the customers’ financial willingness to pay all at once or break into smaller parts and complete over a few years. As you enter HPC the sales will become much larger and you have to work with the customer and their budgets. But once you have won that customer’s confidence, by doing the right thing for them, you will not have to resell yourself or your company’s value over and over. They will live with your value and capabilities each and every day after you perform just a small part of HPC remediation for them. They will become your best marketers when visiting with their friends and family at soccer games, PTA, neighborhood meetings, etc. Why not use free marketing?
4. You must be the champion in your company for this change. You are the leader and you will be on stage every day making the make or break performance of your life. You are the leader and your flock will follow if you understand and communicate the value of this new scary world of HPC to them. The old saying of if you think you can or cannot, YOU ARE CORRECT.
5. You owe it to your customers and team members to provide greater opportunities to understand what comfort can be and how by incorporating this into your business model, even one piece at a time, will make a lifelong change for the better.
So ask yourself?
Do I want to drive my business forward or continue looking in the rearview mirror?
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