The Storm and Insurance Restoration industry can be one of the most stressful professions, after all dealing with Insurance companies after a catastrophic storm to assist property owners who are distraught from the damages to their property seeking relief can be a hair pulling event with long hours and 7 day work weeks for months while having to wait and negotiate with less than cooperative insurance carriers who are refusing to cover all damages and pay fairly for the damages they are covering.
It can also be one of the most intense and rewarding careers where you get to help property owners get their lives back to normal and earn a great living. The Storm Restoration industry draws some real entrepreneurs who are passionate about their business who love to be able to help others and scale their operation doing so. It can also draw some real scumbags who are only concerned about their wallet at anyone’s expense, even the property owners.
In this industry time is of the essence and the need to hire reliable people fast can be a challenge, especially when it includes working with roofing because well, let’s face it, not many people enjoy climbing and inspecting roofs for damage because of the risks involved. The opportunity to make a years pay in 5-6 months is a real draw for the money motivated folks who don’t mind traveling to different states to learn how to sell, build and collect on jobs and be able to take the entire winter off vacationing in Tahiti if they so choose. It’s because of this that loyal trustworthy employees are one in a million and those out to get all they can with no company loyalty run rampant. They have no passion for this industry only the money so the turnover rate is pretty high.
This industry is also open book for the less ethical types to roam free and take advantage of the property owners and/or their employer because of how busy a company can get, the small details may be overlooked, checks wind up missing at times and because of how many opportunistic companies entice reps to “flip” jobs to their company and earn more money. Sales reps with big attitudes and bad morals overdose on self entitlement too often seeking payment for tasks they failed to perform as their only mission was to get money, not serve the people who entrusted them with their property.
Sometimes Sales reps too are vulnerable to being ripped off by business owners who only value the dollar and feel that people are only worthy to help them build their wealth and are expendable when they try to collect on the money they’re owed for the work they’ve performed. The combination of those with overinflated egos and self serving narcissistic behavior can be detrimental for all who are involved mainly the property owners. It can turn into Sociopath central or typical America today where you need 6 attorneys to draw up contracts to do business when you used to be able to shake a man’s hand and the deal was sealed and trust was formed. It’s bad for the reps and for our industry as it gives us good guys an uphill battle to win the hearts of potential customers.
In my opinion the real issue though is in the hiring process some companies use to reel in warm bodies rapidly and train them, and all the tasks new recruits are burdened with and expected to perform in the field and office to receive full compensation. This industry is multifaceted and has taken many of us years to learn and are still learning as things change every year. It can be a breeding ground for constant mistakes, misunderstanding and even fraud, but getting back on the topic of hiring: Many owners are very charismatic and live a lifestyle that is attractive and this larger than life RockStar, Hollywood type reels in young attractive men and women by the droves who want the same lifestyle.
It’s the new American way just look at all the reality t.v. ratings, they are crushing regular sitcoms so what it all boils down to is an owner getting what he/she puts out there in the universe…..People who only come to make as much as they can as fast as they can so they can party their asses off in the V.I.P at the club then brag on social media of their exploits. While we all are here to make money and provide a future of stability and freedom for our ourselves and our family to ward off financial burdens down the road, the caring, giving, loving, serving aspect that God instilled in us at birth is non existent and seemingly subliminally discouraged within their organizations where it’s again: All About the Dollar.
Here is the way to fix this problem and save your reputation as a business owner:
1. Don’t just go after Warm bodies, do a little digging to find out who you’re brining on board to represent your brand, ask better questions before on boarding people who can burn you to the ground. Do a thorough background check and hold high standards, as enticing as it may be to have 100 people bringing you money, they can destroy you overnight because the Internet is instantaneous and unforgiving.
2.Do a DISC profile assessment and find out their weaknesses and strengths, you’re setting your self up for disaster expecting a High D personality to handle office admin and paperwork: they are born to sell and most need Adderall to keep them focused on the task at hand.
3.Split up tasks: No one should be a Swiss Army knife and most can’t do it well. If you need to hire two people to work together and split the sales commissions then do that. You will reap the rewards in the end and the customer will receive stellar service.
4. Have more productive meetings even if it’s via Skype. There needs to be more accountability on all sides, owner and employee. I’ve failed at this and learned my lesson on a few occasions but staying humble and acknowledging our own shortcomings as owners makes us better leaders.
5. Hold yourself Accountable because it all trickles down stream from sales rep to sales manager to YOU so pluck the bad apples off the tree faster than you hire them. Better oversight without micromanagement will breed a stronger team and ultimately you are the one who failed because it’s your company.
6. Love what you do not for the Money only and hire that way. Easy Come, Easy Go seems to be the Mantra of this industry so forgo the people snapping selfies every 10 seconds. They won’t have passion for anything but their own wallet and pretty face. We are here to serve the property owners first and those who know that will have longevity: have passion for helping and giving not just taking and materialistic things or buying out the bar.
7. Be Transparent with the Money: If you’re hiring independent sales reps who are strictly commission, show them where the money is going. Materials, Labor, Lodging etc should all be laid for them to see without Pencil whipping or fudging numbers to line your pockets. Pay what you Say but always be sure to recoup all money you dishes out on draws, travel or anything else
At Storm Nation we are here to help and try mediate an issues between company members and their reps or former reps but not judge or take sides. We are about Facts, Reasoning and helping to uplift and Educate those who have made mistakes because each day is a new beginning. If you’re interested in becoming a member please visit www.stormnation.org. Thanks for taking time to read this editorial and God bless.