Tom Wittman: Closing The Sale Despite Objections

Tom Wittman: Closing The Sale Despite Objections

Objections are the biggest obstacles in any sales process, which is why overcoming objections of all kinds is an essential skill to learn. Sales is the lifeblood of any business, and if you keep getting held down by objections, you won’t be able to achieve the magnitude of success you need in order to flourish. Sam Wakefield chats with Tom Wittman, who is a success advocate for HVAC and plumbing businesses. Drawing on his many years of experience and finely honed expertise, Tom illustrates how you can successfully overcome the one obstacle that most businesses have trouble with. Make sure you master this all-important skill to keep your business growing!

How To Handle The “I Need 3 Bids” Objection?

This is an interview and I’m super excited. Thank you for checking in. So far, we are in 25 countries. I’m excited about everything that’s going on around the world with being able to connect to amazing HVAC salespeople in all the countries around the world, all languages, everything that’s coming together. At the end of the day, the psychology is the same. The way that we interact with our clients and lead from a servant perspective, which is you serve your clients. They’re the money part of it. The closing of the deal takes care of itself and that’s the philosophy that we roll with on Close It Now.

My special guest is somebody who I’ve known for a long time, coming up for many years. We’ve known each other for almost a decade. I met this guy initially when I was a young padawan, learning the sales process myself. Obviously, an expert at the time that I took a class which is about a 2 or 3-day boot camp training under this gentleman. He started in 1982 in the heating and air industry. He doesn’t look nearly that old, but he started like many of us. He started as an installer and he was an Attic Rat, like me. He got his license service tech. He decided for things to get better, he had to get better, which is also the philosophy of our show. He went and got his residential and commercial licenses and ended up becoming a sales manager at a big company. It was bought a couple of times and kept growing and ended up being bought by a manufacturer.

In 1998, they said, “You’ve done such a good job with your company, who you are leading. Would you go out and help some of these other companies who are struggling and maybe have some friction points and some hurdles to get over?” He saw some success there and they kept asking him. At that point, he decided to make a career of that himself. That’s when he opened his business, which is the HVAC Coaching Corner. A fun fact about him, he has an amazing life journey, and not only is his business disciplined, his personal life as well. At one point in time, he had hit 340 pounds. For all of you foreign people, I’m not sure what that is in kilos, but I’m sure you can do the math there. That was at his worst but now is at his best enjoying cycling, hiking, a super active lifestyle, and remodeling a house in Florida for him and his bride. He’s now at 222 pounds and crushing it every single day, both business and fitness. Without further ado, thank you for joining me, Mr. Tom Wittman.

Thank you for the invitation.

That is a super quick bio about yourself, but give us a little bit more insight into your philosophy and your focus. You help both plumbing and heating and air companies, but give us one of the biggest struggles that you have and your vision for overcoming that.

Is It From The Business Sense Or The Selling sense?

Let’s start with the business, in general.

The biggest challenge and I’ve lived through it myself during my journey is the business of understanding a few principles. Cash flow is a big thing for small companies. Minding cash flow and cash spread every day is super important because you can have a profit and loss statement and be making money, run out of cash, and go out of business. That’s number one, watch your cash flow. Number two is to understand where your breakeven is for revenue every month. If they can at least track those two things starting out, they’re going to be very successful because they’re going to know if they are growing their cash. They’re going to know if they’re going to surpass, break-even, and make more informed decisions each month. It’s not easy starting out in a truck with one person and building a company. Those two things are easily tracked. If they monitor that, everything else is going to come pretty easily for sure. Those two principles, even in the largest companies, are oftentimes overlooked. A cash flow and breakeven and then everything else has to do with growing the company. How do you equip the people in the field to do the things they need to do to make sure that the company is going to be profitable?

I see that every day, even in our market, you’d get these large companies which got 40 or 50-year history, but every 6 to 8 years, they’re bought by somebody else because they’re going under because of the offseason. For example, they may drop their prices low to win jobs that they don’t understand that they’re functioning in the revenue. They were paying to do the work instead of keeping quality and keeping the prices where they should be.

They don’t have to do that all the time. That’s the strategy. If they can get while we’re there if they can acquire enough maintenance agreements during demand season to stay in front of customers during the slow season. They can be less weather dependent and not have to work. It’s those types of things. There’s a strategy for everything.

Now, is a perfect time. We are probably going to post this in January, which is dead winter for most places. It means that there’s a lot of heating season going on, but also the other parts of the world, I know I’ve got a big audience base in Australia. You are right in the middle of summer. It is now a good time to plan and start thinking about what’s going to happen in four months from now. How am I going to handle that time of the year and weatherproof the business? How do you advise for that?

First of all, you need to be thinking, winter all summer and summer all winter. That’s Jim Rohn. Give accolades to Jim Rohn. The fact of the matter is managers can’t do it. It’s up to the people that are in front of customers, the customer service reps to plant those seeds and focus on it. There’s a lot of dynamics why they don’t want to do it. A big one is that a lot of companies may not manage their agreements well. What I mean by that demand season, could you imagine being a technician and it’s 100 degrees outside and your first two calls are preventative maintenance service agreement customers and then you’re out until 10:00 at night servicing repairs? That’s a distractor for technicians. If they can buy into the process and discipline themselves to push those calls into the months they need to work and free up opportunities for more incoming calls, take the older equipment, and non-customer equipment first and prioritize that way. My guy changed the lives of the entire company at that point. They can literally be less weather dependent, but it takes the technicians and the customer service reps to buy into it to see how it helps them and make it happen.

What you’re saying is basically starting to prioritize your calls when they reach out or what you’re doing is prioritizing. Set up an actual agenda of this comes first, this comes second, this comes third and then stick to that.

Take care of your existing customers and commitments first. That’s the ethical thing to do. Anything else that comes in that’s a non-client, anybody that’s not an agreement customer isn’t a customer, I believe.

They’re not in the family, as I say.

Everything from that point forward, all those goes first. Dispatching management is a little bit different too. Instead of building a tight schedule during demand season, you’re going to be sliding those calls off to the side and we’ll tell, “The next available technician will get to you.” Then you keep the list growing and it changes the dynamic business. You can do it in one season.

With companies that you’ve done this with, do you have some examples of general members that you’ve turned it around?

I had a plumbing company that went into the heat and cooling business. They were struggling at about half a million. They couldn’t keep employees. The cycle was bad. I went in and got it. I was involved with them more of a hands-on. We are a weekly and we make sure things happen. The first year, the first cycle through the season, they went from half a million to 1.5 million.

They tripled their growth.

It was awesome. They had four technicians and they were running probably 500 calls a month, turning 60% of those into agreements anywhere from 8% to 12% into replacements. Imagine doing that over 3 or 4 months. It doesn’t take long to get some things put in place. We then restructured a little bit, we put people in charge of performance in the field because as you grow, you have to restructure a little bit. In the second year, they hit 2.2 million. They’re in a pretty nice growth pattern right now, but it’s keeping up with this direction.

At that point, it’s a matter of managing the scalability and the details.

Pretty much, but there are a lot of details.

Because this is a very sales-focused podcast and that my whole business is centered around the sales focus and a lot of it is the conversations, let’s dive in a little bit and park there. You mentioned the technician’s responsibility in the field to have that conversation with the client to turn 60% into maintenance agreement customers and which the 8% to 12% into turnovers. What does that conversation look like? In context here, I’ve got a lot of people in the group that listed are small companies, maybe the owner is doing the service and the installs or a little bit larger. People wear a lot of hats or a lot of big companies too were pretty spread. What does that look like?

It’s really simple. It’s called a risk assessment. It’s the same profile that life insurance agencies have been using for years. What’s the average life of the system, the age, average life in or out of warranty, and the probability of future repairs? For example, the system is eighteen years old. The average life is 15 to 20 years. It’s out of warranty. The probability of future repairs is high and for that reason, I’d recommend getting a comfort advisor out to give you some options on upgrading to a newer system or we can go ahead and restore the operation. What would you like to do? If they choose to get a comfort advisor out, they’ve converted it. If they say, “Let’s go ahead and repair it,” I would highly recommend a maintenance agreement so you can get a discount on the repair. We’ll be out here twice a year to get in front of any issues. If you ever have a need, when it’s hot like this, you’ll go to the front-of-the-line service. That’s how they do it. It’s not complicated, but it’s fact-based. There’s no opinion. Everything can be validated with facts so when the technicians stay disciplined in the process, they get phenomenal results without a lot of pushback.

We talk about it that we’re not trying to twist somebody’s arm. We’re not making something up. It’s basically asking permission and then the client says, “Yes.”

From the old days, your customers are in control of making decisions. We’re in control of keeping them in control.

We give them control back by asking the right questions, but by asking the right questions, we all know, “The one who asks the most questions is the one that keeps control of the conversation.” It is a beautiful cycle and a beautiful circle. There is a lot about that philosophy. Let’s talk about sales teams a little bit. What are some of the common challenges you find when you’re turning around and struggling sales team? What do you do to correct that?

Probably the biggest one I find is that as a company grows, they’ll hire a salesperson or a sales consultant to be the savior. They’re left on their own accord to manage their leads, run the calls, and do everything. As the company starts to grow, there isn’t any lead coordination or tracking of performance and results. Making that shift is a challenge, especially if you have a person that’s been in there contributing for a few years, managing the whole process, and then it’s time to bring more people in. The first one right off the bat is, to start managing those leads to final disposition and be disciplined enough to schedule the salespeople very similar to would a technician for the calls. Monitor those leads. Sam, those leads cost anywhere from $400 to $700 a week. Can you imagine handing somebody $1,500 and saying, “Here’s the $1,500, go out and make more money for me?”

You’re not tracking. That’s virtually what happens when those leads aren’t tracked. I would say that’s number one. Number two is not having a sales process that can be replicated and tracked as evidence. The process that we use, we can jump in a car with a comfort advisor and do a quick evaluation, and figure out 2 or 3 gaps. Let’s lighten it up. That’s what people need, tracking and a process that can be evaluated so that we can help these salespeople get better at what they do. The third one, is mindset. It’s a big thing. For the comfort advisors, mindset. They need to learn how to learn the lesson, forget the mistake, and develop a skill. It’s those three things. If they can learn the lesson, and forget the mistake, their mindset is going to be right. When they learn a new skill, they’re going to perform at a higher level.

I love to tell everybody, we never lose in what we do. We either win or we learn and then move forward from it. That’s the mental choice to take those steps forward and to get better from each time. I know even myself being in the field still as well, I learned new verbiage or I learned that there’s a new closing technique I want to try or whatever. I know I’m going to have some learning moments along the way when people say, “I think you’re crazy.” At the same time, it’s your laboratory. That’s why it’s something we’re always moving forward from. We talked a little bit about tracking those numbers to those leads all the way to completion. What are those KPIs or Key Performance Indicators? What things should a comfort consultant or project manager, whatever we call ourselves, what numbers should they be tracking? How do they interact with each other to move that ball forward?

The number one is sales volume. Mainly, we used to be tracking that anyway because we want to make sure we get past breakeven. It’s how many presentations and then the closing percentage of X amount of presentations, what percentage close, and then the average dollar. What’s your average dollar per sale? Those are the core four. I would also include reviews. Do they look before and try to do team reviews after every sale and go back to the customer? There’s one caveat in that I’d like to add. We have a process where the comfort advisors, the salespeople, they offer their own sales plan. It’s interesting, we started to implement that years ago. What’s interesting is most of the comfort advisors, when they understand how to plan, they set a sales target that way exceeds what the expectation of the company expected of them. The unexpected consequences of that were fascinating because we shifted towards, “This is your monthly quota,” to “I want to work with your sales plan. If the comfort advisors plan exceeded the minimum, we’re good with that.” 80% of the time, the comfort advisors plan exceeded the minimum quota and they were on fire to do that. It’s almost as if we were putting a glass ceiling on them by limiting their potential based on the minimum needs of the company.

That makes so much sense to me because I’m that type of person. I know many people, both men and women, if you’re doing HVAC tracking or plumbing if you are doing HVAC sales, you are an achiever. You are more than an achiever or you wouldn’t make this a career to function with a 100% commission mentality and know that’s how you want it to be. Otherwise, you’re limited. That makes so much sense because we all know that on any given day, are we giving it our all? The answer most of the time is probably not. We know there’s juice left in the tank. To be given those reins and that buy-in of, “Let’s control my own destiny and shoot for this, shoot for the moon,” that makes so much sense why those numbers are so much higher most of the time.

That was a good unexpected consequence.

I had a cool idea with this so I’m going to set a context for this next section, but before we do that, anything else you’d like to add? We’ve covered some cool stuff so far.

I’ll take your lead on this one.

Before we do this, one thing I’d like to go through and to get your thoughts on this, the way I teach my system and the way that everybody that’s reading is starting to understand the reason that we do some of the things in the specific order is to set credibility pieces. One of the biggest foundations that we’ve started with, the very first thing is getting into the house. We’re in the house, we’ve introduced ourselves, but then getting into the introduction. Asking everything that we do is based on the three steps of asking permission, giving the data, and then checking in to make sure it was received and how it was received before you move on to any more data points. That’s the initial introduction, which is about the company super quick. Set some credibility pieces there, the introduction about yourself, and then set the agenda for what we’re going to do.

Overcoming Objections: You must track your cashflow and break even every month in order to make decisions for your company.

What is this visit going to look like? It’s just like a doctor’s visit. Part of the reason that I like to make sure that this initial step in the house is in place is where something new that is introduced to their world, anything new that gets introduced to anybody’s space, headspace, they’re going to be resistant to it until they get comfortable with that atmosphere. Even if they don’t pay any attention to your words about those data points that you’re telling them, they’re getting comfortable with you and then you can move on. What are your thoughts on that type of process?

There are a couple of other things I’ve learned over the last few years. One is personality style and keeps it super easy, direct, or social for people. The direct individual, you’re going to notice it right off the bat, “I’m a recovering dominant, direct individual.” They want to get down to business pretty quickly. You usually gain credibility with them by evidencing issues as opposed to having a dialogue about how their company is in your home. I’m not saying to omit that piece of it. However, when you identify a dominant individual, you’re going to gain credibility by getting down to business and your bullet points. With a social person, you’re going to walk in and they’re going to have a picture of sweet tea on the back porch, drink the tea, have a conversation with them, ask questions because they’re going to decide if they like you. If they like you, they’re going to buy from you. That’s fundamental. It’s having an understanding of who your client is and trying to reflect on their behavior, mannerisms, and reality. You’ll go a long way and develop a good rapport.

The second is to ask a few questions. My favorite ones are, “Who in the home has an allergy, say asthma or any respiratory issues?” When they answer those questions, be quiet and listen. After they finish a statement, you’re like, “Tell me more about that,” and get them talking about that. There’s an emotional connection to that problem that they’re telling you. If you can show them evidence of what the problem is and explain to them how you can solve it, chances are they’re going to buy from you. That’s one thing a lot of heating and air conditioning contractors miss. They go to focus on the equipment without asking that questions like, “Where do you notice most of the noise from your system or how difficult it is? Which areas are difficult to heat or cool?” Once they say, “The bedroom upstairs is cold,” or “I hear a lot of noise by my deck,” or “My daughter has allergies,” then have a conversation about it. “If we were able to reduce those allergies or make them better, more comfortable or reduce the noise, would that be important to you?” “Yes, it would. By all means, write it down.” Your job is to evidence the problem and evidence, how you can solve that problem and you’re going to have a high probability of making that sale.

I have developed a homeowner questionnaire that is free for any of you that want it. You can go to the Facebook group. It’s in the file section or email me at and I will send you a free copy of the homeowner questionnaire that we’ve developed.

If Sam put it together, it’s great.

Thank you. It’s pulled from a lot of sources that we’ve shared over the years and so much of that is powerful. At the end of the day, the homeowners will have 2, 3, and 5 however many companies come in to give bids and we don’t give bids. We give evaluations. We give qualified estimates, quotes, and proposals. We don’t drop bids and run. That psychological thing is important because it’s about doing things differently and connecting to people in a way that they are emotionally tied to. Who cares about the box? The box turns on and off. It’s how we navigate everything else that surrounds that particular heater, air conditioner, whatever, and in the conversation can determine what happens there.

That was a perfect segue into when people get in the house and we always hear, “I’m going to have to get three bids on this.” Another one I hear a lot here in the Austin, Texas area, “I’ve got to do my due diligence.” I’ve got to talk to more people. I’ve gotten a lot of questions from a lot of people in my group of how do we handle that I’ve got to get three bids objections. The visit went great. It felt like we had a great connection. I thought we were ready to close the deal right then and then all of a sudden, they hit me and it’s like the punch in the guts. “I’ve got to get three bids. What do I do with that?” Let’s have some fun here and go through some different ways to handle that particular objection.

There’s a concept on how to advance the sale to the next logical step. Either you’re going to close or reset with all interested parties or maybe a committee commits or revisits after research. I’ll leave it at that and then go for it. Let’s bring it out. Let’s have some fun.

Tom, you’d be Mr. Amazing super rock star, comfort consultant. You’ve come to my house. I’ll start it with what you would normally ask. Let’s back up and go ahead and ask for the sale. This will be the first to ask for the sale and then I’ll take it from there as Mr. Homeowner.

“Sam, did everything we’ve covered make sense?”

“I think so.”

“Can you see how all the additional works are going to do a great job with your goals?”

“It seems like it’s probably going to.”

“How soon would you like to start enjoying your new system?”

“We’re having some issues here. It’s about death or literally just dying. We’ve got to call Snapcam. I’m going to have to make this decision pretty soon.”

“How soon before you are going to decide to move forward?”

“Probably this week or sometime.”

“That soon? That’s great. If you don’t mind me asking, what’s going to be different between now and then?”

“We’re going to do some due diligence here. We’ve got to never make any decision like this without getting three bids. You’re the first one in, so that’s full disclosure and I just want to let you know.”

“Thank you for that. My wife and I did the same thing. We want to make sure we’re not getting taken advantage of. I can appreciate that. You say you’ll probably finish your research at the end of the week, is that right?”

“We’ve got a couple of other appointments coming in this week.”

“I can’t tell you that our price reflects everything that you’re getting with the system. You’re going to find a few that may be a little bit higher, but if you do find anybody that’s promising at a lower price, there are probably some gaps in what you’re getting. If you’re going to be finishing by Friday, it would be my pleasure to pop by and visit again with you and your wife to review what we’re offering. I don’t want to know who the other companies are or even see the proposal. I’m just going to ask you a few questions. In the end, at least you’ll be able to make a more informed decision. For the inconvenience of having me back, I’d be even happier to offer up a $50 gift certificate to the restaurant of your choice. What do you say?”

“That would probably work.”

“Then we’ll see you this Friday?”

“I think we’re wanting to go ahead and do a little sooner than that. Tomorrow, the other two are coming. Are there any sooner days than Friday?”

“As a matter of fact, would Wednesday work for you?”

“Wednesday would probably be fine.”

“Bell’s at 3:00?”

“It sounds good.”

“We’ll see you then.” That’s one way directly. There’s another way to do it, but it depends upon how comfortable the company is with certain guarantees to reduce risks. It’s framing that.

What Do You Mean By That?

A lot of companies have a money-back or an exchange policy within the first year. That simply says, if they’re not happy with the company, the system or the design at all, they’ll do whatever it takes to make it right, including a full refund for the installation with up to a year. Some companies are comfortable with that, some companies aren’t. All I’m doing is I’m sharing in general what works 40% of the time with customers.

It’s super quick as a pop-out for everybody, all of these different ways to go about this. These are different tools in your toolbox. That’s why Tom said 40% of the time, not everyone has the magic bullet for this objection. However, your job is through the visit to start to understand the type of person you’re talking to, the personality, and what they’re responding to throughout the visit and judge your level of rapport with them that you’ve built throughout the visit. To know that if and when this comes up, which tool to grab for the job. If you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail but when you’ve got a set of tools, then you can pick the right one. You pinpoint exactly what needs to happen. That’s the quick context for that.

For example, my company does offer that one-year and no questions asked money-back guarantee, the one-year test drive. That is a great way to go about it. How about you? I’ll take on this one because I’m comfortable and familiar with this one. You’ll be Mr. Homeowner. We’ll use that one. All the companies out there that offer that, this is the fantastic verbiage to be able to use this one and to handle that. “Tom, we’ve gone over everything with the project. We talked about little John. His room is in the corner and you can see what we’re planning on doing there is going to make that room so much more comfortable. They’re going to wake up and not having that dangerous space heater like we talked about in the bedroom anymore. Your wife with the allergies, being so bad that she has to get shots. We talked about being able to reduce that with so many of our clients that swear by our process for handling the allergies in the home. Would you like to include that here as well?”


“We know you can talk to a ton of different companies in the area and I appreciate you giving us a call. Everything else that we talked about, the systems, all that makes sense. The last thing is picking an installation date and to get you on the calendar. How does that sound?”

Overcoming Objections: Having an understanding of who your client is goes a long way in developing a good rapport.

“That sounds fine, but I need a little bit more research.”

“Is there a part of the project that you want to research? Is that some of the installation methods or something like that?”

“No, you did a great job explaining everything very well. You’re the second person I’ve talked to. If that was my decision, you would definitely win. I’ve scheduled two more people out to have a discussion. I’m not sharing the proposals or anything like that. I want to make sure to do my due diligence. It’s a big investment. I want to make sure that I’m not going to get taken advantage of.”

“I totally get that. It is such a big investment and we don’t take it lightly at all. Obviously, you found us because of our reviews online and how we handle. In fact, you mentioned the reason that you called us is not because of the positive reviews, but how we handle the negative ones when they do arise. We’re known for taking care of problems immediately. That’s something that spoke to you. With having that reputation, I think you’re a good ally. My wife and I, do the same thing. We want to make sure and you mentioned not taken advantage of, but at the end of the day, you’ve already talked to one. We’re number two. I have a question for you, and it would be, what are you looking for that you haven’t found already with us?”

“I want to make sure I’m not overpaying for the work.”

“Let me grab this form here. This is something I think you are going to enjoy. We do something that’s a little different and you’d be hard-pressed to find another company anywhere in the area that has the same kind of guarantee, especially that puts it in writing as we do. This is what we call our one-year test drive. What this means is for any reason during the first year, if you’re not satisfied with the performance and in the new equipment, we’re not able to take care of those problems as we say we’re going to, call me up in a year and say, “Sam, this didn’t work out.” We will underline it. We will refund every penny back that you paid us. That’s our way of taking the risk, so you don’t have to. I’m asking you for thousands of dollars here. We should be the ones taking that risk so you don’t have to. Taking that risk off and knowing that we have this guarantee and no other company is going to have that. Why don’t you say we get on the calendar now?”

“Have you ever had to refund any money?”

“In fact, we have and we’ve stood behind it. How would you like to hear that story?”

“Let’s go ahead and do it.”

“Welcome to the family.” I’ve used that dozens of times. In fact, for closing, that’s been effective. Typically, either the story comes up then or at some point in the process, I’ve sprinkled in the story. Remember everyone, stories sell, facts tell. Stories are important when you come across a situation and you can think of a story that’s a similar type of scenario for whatever the homeowner is. Say, “This reminds me of this other client I had. It was a similar situation. Here’s their problem that was so much like yours. Here’s what their outcome is now. They love it. I saw him at the grocery store the other day and they gave me a high five and told me how much they love their system.” When you sprinkle in stories like that through the process, it makes things so much better. The story would normally come up with how we refunded the money because of whatever scenario. It’s never been because somebody was upset at us because of the equipment or whatever. It’s always something else. The way that we handle people properly is taking care of them like family.

This is a story that anyone can use. Say, “Somebody that I work with did this. This is a story of a lady. She installed a top-of-the-line system with us but for whatever reason, a couple of weeks later, said that she could feel the voltage in the control wire that we installed, which of course was unusual. Come to find out, she had some medical things. Her family committed her to an institution a couple of weeks later. What we did as the family came to us wanting to take advantage of the money-back guarantee, not because anything was wrong with the system, but because they needed the money back for her situation. What we did is we took the equipment out, installed super basic equipment, and refunded the difference. I said, ‘This was the right thing to do, but you’re selling the house so it’s going to need a heating and air system in it.’ That’s the way that we take care of people.” That’s telling that story also to the homeowner and saying, “That’s the way that we take care of our family. Would you like to go with a company that takes care of people like that or to go with who knows here?” Stories are powerful. That’s a total pop-out. Is there another way to handle the three bids comparison?

There is. There’s one thing about the word objections anymore that I shake when people say objection because there’s no such thing as an objection.

There’s A Question That’s Not Answered Yet.

There are reasons for not buying and reasons are solvable, but there are situations where they simply can’t. It’s important to discern which one that is. Some reasons are, “I’m not sure how to pay for it. I don’t know if I want to spend that much,” or getting other bids. It’s either a value issue or a money issue. It’s one of those two. If we can uncover the reason, isolate. If we could solve this problem for you, whether it’d be interviews that move forward and close. That’s what it’s about. The reason I say that is because I think the word objection for a salesperson oftentimes, I’m going to get hate mail. When I say it is, it’s used as an excuse.

It’s A Crutch To Bail Out On Doing The Work

There are only maybe 5 to 8 reasons. “I don’t know if I can pay for it. I’m going to do it later. I need to speak to my spouse in getting other bids because I want to make sure I’m not overpaying. I’m getting other bids to see if there’s anything better out there. I thought it was cheaper online. I’ve got a buddy in the business who’ll handle it for me. You’re $3,000 more than the other person.” Imagine if everybody knew how to solve those problems. Any other industry and I say this respectfully because I love this industry and heating and air conditioning and plumbing, they don’t look at it that way. How do I solve these problems, uncover, and solve and then once they get a good feel of how to do that, results go through the roof? It takes a lot of books to do that.

Much of it is trading yourself the mindset and the belief system and having the overall intestinal fortitude to ask the questions in those uncomfortable moments. It’s only uncomfortable because we think it’s uncomfortable. We’ve gone down that road where we’ve gone through literally every single step of the close, question after question and ask for the sell 6, 8, 10, 12 times with the homeowner, make the sell and they thank us for helping them buy. It was never, “I feel pressured.” It’s never a resistance. It’s much more of, “Thank you. I didn’t even know why I was saying no, but you helped me uncover that real reason.”

It is managing the conversation.

Let’s do one more of another way to handle that. Do you want to take one more?

I’m going to use it in a different way. “Let me ask you, we have an opening on Thursday or Friday. What works better for the installation?”

“Friday is probably going to work better. I think we’re going to be off, but this is only Monday. We’ve got a couple more bids coming in between now and then before we make our final decision.”

“I might say I appreciate that. My wife and I, typically do the same thing. We want to make sure we’ll not get taken advantage of. Let me ask you a question. Can you remember a time when you made a significant purchase and then when you brought that purchase home, you regretted making that purchase?”


“Tell me about that.”

I’ll use a real-life example. “My wife and I were at training, a conference one time. It was energetic and the person from the Sade’s sold us these. We’d take responsibility, but we decided to buy these big, expensive, future courses that we were going to attend. We got home and instantly regretted it because it was way more than we ever intended to spend when we were there. We ended up calling them back and they had their policy that if we didn’t talk to them within three days, there’s no money back. We were stuck with these things. They were almost rude that we had called back and tried to get refunds on them.”

“You had no recourse that you get a refund?”

“No, it was a pretty rough situation.”

“At our company, we don’t think that’s there. That’s why we offer an exchange policy. It is simply stated for the first year of ownership, if you’re not happy with the performance of the system, the company or anything at all, we’ll do whatever it takes to make it right or replace your system with another new one or give you 100% refund, whatever it takes to make you happy. We take all the risks so you don’t have to. We’re very serious about making sure that our customers are 100% satisfied. You can be assured that you’re not overpaying and you have recourse. If you are not happy with the performance of our company or our system, would there be any reason not to move forward with scheduling the work?”

“You’re the first person that’s ever mentioned anything like that. Everybody else seems like they’re going to put it in. That’s why we’ve contacted so many firms because we’re just trying to fill out who we think is with the most integrity. That’s something that’s important to us. That’s fantastic. Do you have anything in writing about that?”

“Here’s our guarantee, if you will.”

“I really liked that. Let’s go ahead and get it in. Can we still do it on Friday?”

“Absolutely. Congratulations. By the way, you’re going to love your new system.”

The thoughts create an emotion, emotion determines action and action determines an outcome. Over the last years, I’ve learned that technique and it’s fun because you can influence the way people think about what they’re about to purchase. If that’s a positive experience, chances are the outcome is going to be positive as well. As long as you’re backing it up. I put a different twist on the whole no lemons guaranteeing.

I love that you had them retell the story because that obviously situational puts them back in the emotion of what it was like. It was basically building that gap. They think what you’re offering is here, but when you ask them about that situation, it makes us emotionally remember how bad it was. Then the way that you propose the guarantee if it moved that up to here so that the gap was so much bigger than they’re realizing where they’re going to be versus what that was like.

It unpacks the mental subconscious reminder of the mistake they made and brings it to the table.

Overcoming Objections: Thoughts create emotions. Emotions determine actions. Actions determine outcomes.

When things come into the light, obviously they’re not as scary as they were when it was in a distant memory. I appreciate you so much for being with me during this interview. For everyone else, go to to check out all the Close It Now information. Join our Facebook group because it is a great continuing conversation. It’s a good place to ask questions, a great community there of like-minded people who want to serve others, work less and earn more, and crush it in this industry. There’s no reason that you can almost sneeze and sell $1 million worth of equipment in our industry if you treat it properly and way up from there. There are people in the group that are going to do $3 million, $4 million, $5 million this coming year, and more, earn six figures all over the map in the six-figure range. That is what we’re all about is encouraging and coaching you to be able to do that. Do you still have your podcast?

It will be on the website.

What is the best way for everybody to get in touch with you?

Probably, email or phone,, and the website is The new site is going to be launched, so that’ll be great.

Any parting thoughts?

It’s a pleasure to work with you and as you know, the rising tide raises all ships. At least for me, it sounds like you are starting to get a little bit of a network of like-minded people. We do help each other help more contractors. Kudos to you for putting this platform together and I look forward to seeing what the future brings.

I appreciate it so much as well. Everyone, this has been another episode of Close It Now. Go out there and save the world one heatstroke at a time. Go save the world, one frostbite at a time. We will talk to you again soon.

Take care.

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About Tom Wittman

Having raised two wonderful children with his amazing wife Carol of 30+ years, Tom started his career by putting himself through an HVAC vocational course 36 + years ago while working part-time as a shop helper and a UPS truck loader After earning his HVAC bachelor’s degree, Tom held many positions from Installer, Service Technician, Comfort Advisor and Service / Sales Manager where he was nationally recognized as one of the top 5 sales performers for over 5 years.

After earning his residential and commercial contracting license, Tom was afforded the position of General Manager of a large HVAC – plumbing company where he learned hands-on how to build a residential HVAC business. As a General Manager, Tom lead his team to transition the business from 80% RNC to 70% Residential replacement within three years and improved net profitability from mid-range single-digit to solid double-digit results by making sure every employee clearly understood their role, measuring daily results against pre-determined benchmarks and taking full advantage of each learning opportunity with every employee.

That experience afforded Tom the opportunity to support a large number of contractors covering the U.S. and Canada grow their business by serving the HVAC Industry as a Speaker, Instructor, and hands-on – on-site implementation specialist for the last 20+ years. Tom continues to serve the Industry in that capacity while maintaining partial ownership of a few select organizations to ensure that what is being instructed and advised is relevant, practical, and actually works.