Stay Ahead of a
As the economy appears to
slowing down again, business basics become even more
important. Maintaining the fiscal discipline and
successful sales techniques that you have used to
survive the last few years is paramount. Getting
your business processes in order while giving your field
techs the tools they need to succeed is critical.
Crunch your Numbers
As with most businesses, you've probably redone your
numbers at least once already this year so you're
reluctant to put the time into doing it again.
But, if your productivity has fallen with the economy,
you need to know, and to make adjustments to maintain
profits. A few minutes with Numbers Cruncher or
whatever tools you use to establish and adjust your
prices can really pay off.
When things slow down,
many businesses feel the need to lower their prices to
compete with the lowest price, unprofitable businesses
in their area. Loss leaders can be used to get
your foot in the door and compete on price where
necessary, but they must be used intelligently.
We often hear from
business managers during their Numbers Cruncher reviews
that they need to cut their prices across the board to
compete. After a brief conversation, the
conclusion is often to build the cost of a few specific
loss leaders into the budget, and offer discounts only
on these highly competitive items. When you know
your costs, you can safely make the price changes you
need without jeopardizing the health of your business.
you have your current numbers in hand, be sure to
document them. If you get price complaints or are
accused of price gouging by a disgruntled customer,
you'll be glad you have documentation to back up your
Hone your Sales
Do not skimp on the tools and training that can make
your techs more effective in the field. Your
ongoing technical and sales training efforts are
designed to improve your techs' job skills which in turn
improves job quality, customer satisfaction, and the
bottom line. Keep it up even in down times.
If you don't do it
already, now is the time to work with your suppliers to
optimize your tools and techniques for selling,
installing, and servicing their products. Many
manufacturers can provide free training for your techs
to enhance their job performance. They often provide
free sales materials that you can combine with your flat
rate books that can make the sales process easier and
more successful for your techs.
If you don't know where to
start to get free or low cost training, talk to your
supply house. They deal with manufacturer's reps
every day. If they can't help, groups like the
PHCC, ECBA, Nexstar, and QSC have industry relationships
and training resources.
After the last few years,
dealing with a slowing economy should be a manageable
challenge. Remember the lessons learned while
surviving the recession, and continue to work on the
details of your business. Success depends on
understanding and controlling your costs while
maintaining and building technical and sales skills.
Click Here to Crunch your Numbers Today!
Quick Tech Tip
As your costs and prices change, it's
easy to update specific sections of your Flat Rate
Price Books with NSPG software. You can easily
make the changes to your book calculations on the Setup
form, and then create loss leaders for specific Tasks to
meet your competitive challenges.
Once the prices look good to you, open the Print form,
and select and print the specific pages of your price
books you want to replace. Then, remove the old
pages from your existing price books, and insert the new
pages with your updated, competitive prices.
You now have updated price
books for your technicians to use in the field.
Be sure to let your techs
know how to most effectively use your new loss leaders
as sales tools to profitably compete against low-ball
Printed Flat Rate Price Book
We have decided to extend out special Free
printed Flat Rate Price Book offer to anyone who
orders our Flat Rate Software (National Standard
Price Guide) through the end of May 2011.
Get your first
Custom Printed Price Book for
direct from NSPG with your purchase of NSPG Flat
We make it easy to
Rise Above the Competition.
Here's how easy
Flat Rate can be:
- Get your NSPG
Flat Rate software.
- Enter your
information and customize your books any way you
- With a click
of your mouse, send us your Flat Rate Book
- We will print
and bind your Flat Rate books with our high
speed color laser publishing system.
That's all there is
to it. You spend no time printing and binding your
books. You spend no time hassling with your local
print shop trying to get the quality you need.
We Make It
Easy to get your own custom printed Flat Rate Price
Book. Just place your
software order via our web store at
before the end of May 2011. You will
automatically receive credit for your free custom
Flat Rate Price Book.
This is a limited
time web store only offer, so don't delay.
Click here, and save some money now.
Nexstar Legacy Foundation
Nexstar Legacy Foundation announced their
2010-2011 scholarship award winners at Nexstar's
Owners' Spotlight Series in Clearwater Beach,
Florida on Saturday, March 20th.. Seven students
will receive scholarships to pursue education in
preparation for careers within the plumbing,
HVAC and electrical industry.
"The mission of the Nexstar Legacy Foundation is
to give back to an industry that has been so
good to us", said Scholarship Committee Chair
Julie Wieman of MacGregor Plumbing & Heating of
Harbor Springs, Michigan.
Scholarships are awarded based upon merit,
chosen by a scholarship selection committee
comprised of industry leaders both inside, and
outside of, Nexstar. The scholarship program is
the major gifting program of the Foundation. The
largest annual award is the Frank Blau, Jr.
Award of $6,000. Since its inception, the
Nexstar Legacy Foundation has awarded over
$84,000 in scholarship grants in only four short
Inspired by the foundation's co-founder Frank Blau, Board Chair John Ward of Applewood
Plumbing Heating & Electric of Denver, Colorado,
said, "I give to the Foundation because the
education Frank Blau gave me raised me from
poverty to prosperity".
high school, college students and industry
professionals applied for this year's
scholarships that were funded through the Legacy
Foundation by individual and company donations.
Julie Wieman said, "The goal is to continue to
build visibility for the program and to increase
fundraising among members of Nexstar, while also
reaching out to non-members."
more information on the Nexstar Legacy
Foundation or to make a donation, go to
www.nexstarfoundation.org or contact Renee
Cardarelle at (651) 789-8518 or email@example.com.
Apprenticeship - $1,000
San Diego, CA
Thomas Edison State College
Anderson Plumbing, Heating and Cooling El
Technical College - $2,000
Lincoln Technical Institute
Zanesville, OH University of Northwestern
Four-Year College - $3,000
Martin Masters Plumbing Midland Park, NJ
Topeka, KS Washburn University
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Frank Blau, Jr. Award -
Green Bay, WI
Michigan Technological University
Drucks, Menasha, WI
Call 800 841-8542 today
to learn about our affordable, no interest, payment plans for NSPG
I'm a great believer in luck, and I find
the harder I work the more I have of it.
If the world should blow itself up, the
last audible voice would be that of an expert saying it
can't be done. Peter Ustinov
Write a wise saying and your name will
live forever. Anonymous
He hoped and prayed that there wasn't an
afterlife. Then he realized there was a contradiction
involved here and merely hoped that there wasn't an
afterlife. Douglas Adams
If I knew I was going to live this long,
I'd have taken better care of myself. Mickey
Laughing at our mistakes can lengthen our
own life. Laughing at someone else's can shorten it.
reports coming in over the last few months have been
increasingly disappointing. After an especially
weak report on February's trade deficit, Macroeconomic
Advisers, a forecasting company, lowered their first
quarter G.D.P. estimate to 1.5 percent annualized. That
rate would be slower than each of the last two quarters.
We are seeing service
industry materials price increases over the next few
months from 5% to 18%. How much have you raised your
rates this year?
Oak Creek Plumbing in Contractor Mag
Viruses Build Solar Panels
Ask Ellen Rohr
Plumbing the Depths of Culture
Free Microsoft Safety Scanner