Dealing with Price Objects as an Estimator

Posted by David Chism | Tue, Jul 11, 2017

Humor­ous Post Warning

This is a lit­tle bit out of the ordi­nary post this week. It is a short humor­ous sto­ry about an esti­ma­tor I once knew in the paint­ing indus­try and his expe­ri­ence deal­ing with price objec­tions! I am keep­ing his name and com­pa­ny con­fi­den­tial! I am also not endors­ing what he did. I just always get a kick out of his response to a prospect.
The esti­ma­tor got a call to go out to an über-wealthy neigh­bor­hood to look at esti­mat­ing the paint­ing of a small bath­room. Yep! Just a bath­room. When he arrived to the coastal prop­er­ty and knocked on the door, the wife answered the door. The esti­ma­tor asked to speak with the hus­band, the one who sched­uled the paint­ing esti­mate. A minute lat­er, the hus­band walked to the door and said, Fol­low me!” (no greet­ing, no hand­shake — just a gruff fol­low me”). The two of them walked to the bath­room, and the own­er said, Here it is. Let me know the cost. I’ll be in my office!” The man briskly walked off. The esti­ma­tor looked at the bath­room and real­ly did not have to even mea­sure it. He knew it would take no more than a day at most –maybe even a few hours. He walked over the man’s office and told him that it would cost $65 an hour and then gave him a range of hours it would take to do the job. The own­er of the house looked up from his desk, looked at the esti­ma­tor and said in a rather loud voice, SIX­TY-FIVE DOL­LARS AN HOUR! I ONLY PAY MY #$@% ATTOR­NEY $60 AN HOUR!” The esti­ma­tor kept silent for a moment and stood there just look­ing at the own­er. He thought to him­self, Should I or should I not say what I’m about to say?” He decid­ed to speak his mind! Well, maybe you should have your attor­ney paint your bathroom.”  After he said that, he smiled and left the house and said a pleas­ant good­bye to the man’s wife on his way out the door. He told me that the own­er sat there speech­less — his expres­sion was priceless! 
When you deal with a price objec­tion, using the sales tech­nique above prob­a­bly won’t help you sell more work. I think the paint esti­ma­tor knew he had a 0% chance of clos­ing that deal. He just had a few too many objec­tions at the time is my guess. It makes for a good laugh to this day. I’d love to hear some of your humor sto­ries with prospects or cus­tomers too. Email me or post below! Thanks for reading!

About David Chism

David Chism started his business out of a passion for helping small contracting businesses grow, be more profitable and become better known to their target clients. One lifelong hobby of David is using techie gadgets. So this blog is a place where he writes about technology, marketing ideas, just for fun (humor), personal thoughts on small business and more.


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