Speaker 4: (00:47)
Hello everybody, this is Sam tagger with the D2D podcast and I’m here with Nick Forsell and we literally here in Dallas, Texas in his office. It’s like late at night and we are still burning from both ends. So, never stop. I guess when you’re out here hustling against 9,000 contractors, you’ve got to, you got to out hustle. It’s like, yeah, I was gonna say, I was like our, remember anyway, today when I was teaching it was like how many are there?
Like there’s so many in Dallas and it’s brought a lot of chucking a truck, a lot of checking and trucks. Anyway, so I mean it’s, today I want to dive in to kind of what do you do? Distinguish yourself, what do you do to stand out on the doors? What do you do to, you know, when people’s business, when they’re bidding, and we are really going to dive into this whole competitive marketplace and how we can distinguish ourselves to win and stop just being the guy that’s like waiting for the phone to ring. You’re waiting for the guy that you just get that low hanging fruit. So I’m excited to kind of dive into that. And then more of the sales side of things, which, you know, obviously you’ve been in this since you were, how old? When did you kind of start this?
Speaker 5: (01:50)
Uh, in roofing? 18,
Speaker 4: (01:52)
18? Yeah. Since legal age, pretty much. And so years of experience side of to pick your brand, you’ve also been on uh, SVGs like courses. You’ve done some training but a lot of training videos and that SPG university, that makes two of us. I like it. It’s good. It’s fun getting used to the camera. Yeah. Yeah. So what we’re going to do today, I’m going to ask you just a few questions and then you just feel free to freestyle and they’ll hold back. You want to hear the rawness. So first off, how have you seen the industry change since you’re 18 to now?
Speaker 5: (02:26)
Well, I don’t think anybody knew what Hale was when I was 18. There’s a few of the 20 years ago, there are some industry innovators, you know, the big guys back in the day of the aspens and, and all that. Um, they really got in when, when it was easy and we were just talking about how easy it would have been and how nice it would have been to sell when there was nobody to sell against.
Speaker 4: (02:46)
Yeah. There wasn’t much regulation around pricing. Insurance companies weren’t going crazy. Trump
Speaker 5: (02:50)
Pop guys offer this, that whatever, all the laws and it’s just a, it’s been a crazy turn on. And I’ve been in building besides, that’s really what I did before I got into roofing specifically as a remodeling contractor, decks and fences to home building a commercial buildings. That outs all, I mean you name it, I’ve done it. Um, so when I got into the store, I actually, I was brought in by a storm that hit my neighborhood. I grew up in, back up in the Midwest. Let’s go, you know everybody’s calling, what do I do? What do I do? And it was game on who?
Speaker 4: (03:26)
Yeah, cause you kind of where the guy that knew how to do roofs and they were like here with needing a roof. I had done their kitchen or I had heard this or that, whatever. And they’re like, oh my God, what do I do? And you already had that rapport.
Speaker 5: (03:37)
Cool. So it was easy. It was an easy transition. And I never looked back. I never want to do another bathroom again in my life.
Speaker 4: (03:45)
I mean, I felt some people when they do the bathrooms and the kitchens and stuff, and I’m like, this seems a lot more or less headache. Like la less said a short term. It’s better turn around. You’re not sitting in somebodies house for weeks or months at a time. Wow. You know? Yeah. And they’re sitting there like, well, I got my kids practice at three. He got leave. And you’re just like, Jeez. I literally had clients
Speaker 5: (04:07)
Forced while the job was going. I mean, moved out, divorced. Don’t know if it was because of that job. I went, I think it was the nail in the coffin.
Speaker 4: (04:14)
But you’re just like, just like, this is awkward. So funniest story. And since you’ve been around, I mean, you have any crazy story that comes to mind that you’re just like, dude, there was this one customer and this one rep, this one, whatever. No, ma’am.
Speaker 5: (04:28)
I don’t know if there’s anything crazy. He put me on the spot too, so I’ll definitely think about that while we go here. But uh, it just, you know, you never know what’s going to be behind that door. I love knocking doors, which I know you do too. A lot of guys don’t get that and uh, you just never know. It’s, it’s, I don’t think there’s any major, major event that ever happened. Just all the little things, all the little quirks, a level when somebody is just a total butt hole, you know a good word. Just so it just like, you know, through the door. Thank you sir. Have a great day and thanks for making my day kind of deal. You know, kill them with kindness. I just, I don’t know, people’s ignorance blows me away.
Speaker 4: (05:07)
Just all the little things you see, there’s the little nuances of like, really that’s how they’re going to treat a human being. The attire that they show up to the door and we ever had a naked person. No, but open ro tighty whities fuzzy slipper type. Yeah. It had this old dude just naked. I’m like, really? You just, you’re just make it, I think he had like dementia or something, you know what I mean? And I’m like, he’s not all there, but like, okay, so you’ve had any of those. I mean, more power to it means you’ve knocked enough doors when you find the naked man. Okay. So what about kind of some of the biggest hardships? There’s, you’ve kind of grown your own company and gone through and just figuring it out. I mean just moved into a nice office space here and kind of, it looks like you’re obviously scaling.
Speaker 4: (05:56)
You’ve Chicago just open up Denver or Colorado Springs here, a couple of locations. I’m sure there’s been some pain points in that process. Like what’s been some of the road like pivotal challenges that have kind of, I dunno, shaped you and gotten you where you are today? I think one of the biggest challenges that I’ve overcome recently as proper management, um, finding guys like Jason and my production manager here, Ryan up in Chicago and working with the mixed use, working with nexpose most under alliance construction, just the management. If you don’t have the proper management, everything else goes. It just goes away. I ain’t even say leadership over management. I think that there’s a difference between managing, which I look at it like fire, putting out her versus leading and inspiring and putting the right systems and making sure that their things are well oiled and move. I always did everything myself. I had to do it all. I did all the selling, the building, the collecting, all of it, you know, and then it got to a point where it’s Arctic, let’s, let’s take that next step when we bring on sales men and be the first time I tried that, I didn’t have the right leadership even in myself because I didn’t know what I was doing.
Speaker 4: (07:15)
I went from a retail industry to this crazy insurance world or the, you know, it’s just money all over the place and dealing with paperwork I’ve never read before. You know, it’s not handwritten anymore, you know? That’s really long. That’s an important, it’s good though. We’re all, I, everything’s got to be to a t or a big trouble in this game. So, so what did, like what, when you say, man, I kicked me in the nuts when I had to move into leadership. And how are the sales guys like or some of those lessons you learned that you were just like, oh, I wish I would have known that I added on this. I would have done this. Like are there any like big ones that just kind of stick out that you’re like, man, had I gone back, I wish I would’ve done this commitment?
Speaker 4: (08:02)
I think just for me relinquishing some of that control, relinquishing some of that control. Um, and he’s, he’s over here shaking his head and rolling his eyes at me because I still like every day he’s like, let me do it. Just stop. Let me do it. I got it. Don’t worry about it. You know? So gaining that trust in your fellow leaders in your company is a huge thing. If you don’t have people that you can trust that and prove that they, that you can trust them on a daily basis, you got enough of them and you can have all the guys in the world. And if there’s nobody to lead them, it’s just a mess. So this is, this is an important principle and I want to talk on this and if you’re listening to this, pay attention because the biggest fault in most leaders is they don’t lead. They want to hold on to everything, which leading I think is letting go. Like you said, it’s, it’s saying I trust in the people that are below me to do their job because our thing to do and and why, why do you think that is? You know what I mean?
Speaker 5: (09:10)
I’ve just done it myself for years and years and years and it’s just a habit. You know? There’s good habits and bad habits as we all know him and to break either one of them is just, it’s a hard thing to do when you’ve done it for so long. It’s, and I’ve been burned. Yeah. It first started, one of my very first manager I tried left me to go to another company. So boom, my guards up now, every other manager after that that I’ve tried to bring into my system, it’s like trust to be here in two weeks because that wasn’t,
Speaker 4: (09:43)
I don’t, I spend all this time and energy trying to empower you. You’re not going to be around or, and that’s the biggest pitfall of what stops people from growth. And this is in this business. I watched people over and over, I can say I want to grow. And I’m like, do you really think you’re going to grow if you are doing everything? And they go, it’s not going to happen. And then other like, why just can’t find the right people? I’m like, are you allowing your people to be the right people? Or the next question it has, like if I went and interviewed him one on one and ask them, is he kind of a control freak? See ever actually empower you, what would they say? Nine Times out of 10 that owners like, uh, well. So I think that’s an important nugget. Everybody should pull from this. Like
Speaker 5: (10:26)
We’re looking for someone to come in and just completely blow us away. And the chances of that happening for anybody, I don’t care how good you are, so you’ve gotta be realistic. And I think that’s another big thing for me is I’ve became, when I first got into the industry, it was like, all right, come and show me how to do this thing that you call, you know, storm chasing. And uh, it just, it didn’t happen. So now it’s like, shit, I got to figure this out. So slow growth, I’m all about slow growth. I don’t want to go out and hire 40 guys and it’s just a total shit show and it’s, I can’t manage it. And so I like scale. I took a step back. I was like, all right, let’s just take our time, figure it out, slow growth, find the right people. If I don’t have the right people right now, they’ll come. I’ll find it. And when I got to Texas two and a half years ago, it started to happen. I mean my top sales guy to this day, I sat down at the bar next to a metro Hooters and he just worked out completely outside of the industry and everybody else. I haven’t really put ads out to find them. I’ve just kind of met him
Speaker 4: (11:27)
And you just say, Hey, I got a better spot for yet. Drop what you’re doing, come here. And then you nurture them. Like when you lead somebody, what are some of the principles of leadership that you would say, man, I must do in order to get that guy he met at the bar into this top salesperson? Like what? What did you do to to create that? Because I think a lot of people are like, well, I don’t have that guy. Right. Like what you said, like they, they can hire some guy to sweep them off their feet and take it over and it’s like, what did you do to take the guy from nomad to top guy and what’d you do?
Speaker 5: (12:02)
Because it wasn’t just me when I got here, I didn’t bring a team with me. I had moved from the Midwest to Jersey after sandy and then I was just coming here on my own. It wasn’t bringing anybody with me. Um, I had a partner at the time that we were working together and we split and did her own thing. But I took, I took Tanner who I had met at that bar and basically held his hand. I took them out door now and I could do that because it was just, it was, I didn’t have anybody else to worry about it. It was just me and him. So he got a lot of attention and I think that’s where I failed this year is that I hired on seven or eight guys and there’s a few of them that were upset. I didn’t give him the attention they needed cause I was busy doing my own thing with commercial sales and this and that and I didn’t, didn’t commit, you know, I gotta I gotta let that stuff go. If I really want to build a team, I got to be able to give them everything I’ve got, which I can’t do unless I’ve got help.
Speaker 4: (12:56)
Yeah. It’s either you are, you got to count on another sales leader to like, will you are you got to do it yourself. I mean, the biggest thing was ordering and scheduling here. Do that. Because if you’re a CEO, it’s like what’s your hourly rate? Couple minutes you’re spending, your time is spent ordering and scheduling and paper pushing and putting out this fire. You’re literally diminishing your value. Yeah. You know what I mean? And I think we all see that. Like I fall into that. It’s like sending emails. The other day I was like, I’m literally individually sendings dumb emails. I could literally pay somebody five bucks an hour to do that. It’s just ridiculous stuff. We get sucked into the vortex of like buisiness really what I call that incidence, Devil’s anus is my nickname. So if you’re watching this, don’t get sucked into devil’s anus. A bad place to be. Yes. So let me ask you this. You’re out knocking. You said this weird word that no one ever says I actually liked docking. It’s like, well, who says that? It’s weird. There’s a few of us, right? Yeah. But what, what, what, what helped you change your perspective to like, this job sucks too. I actually like knocky. I think that’s an interesting question because it’s like I’m scared shitless the first time I ever did it. Yeah.
Speaker 5: (14:11)
People that I knew that I grew up in this neighborhood and I was familiar with it, I’ve just got to give it, one of my guys says, I’ve now I’ve got the gift of Gab. You know, we’re just, after you do it for so long, it just flows in, you know? But man, those first, the first year, the first two years, even, especially after getting out of my comfort zone and in my hometown and trying to go out and talk to people and they’re just people, you know, once you realize that, I think you’re, you’re better off. But,
Speaker 4: (14:42)
So it’s just kind of understanding. It’s like they’re not going to kill you. They were just people once to do it enough. It’s like they’re all people and people are all pretty much the same. You know, they want to feel a, they all have their insecurity. They all have their own life. Yeah. I do too. The Guy I’m talking about Tanner, he, he always says, uh, you’re all, the worst that could happen is you walk away from that door with a roof he didn’t have in the first place. I love that. I mean that is the worst thing you had. You didn’t have it when you went there. So who cares if you don’t have it when you leave, you didn’t hurt you in any way. That’s awesome. So let’s give some tips on the sales process. Like any advice that you’re like, man, this is really worked for me.
Speaker 4: (15:23)
I mean we’re, we’re in a competitive space where, you know, it’s not easy to talk. Yeah, it’s cut throat. People paying deductibles and people knocking every day and you’re the 10th hey, line up. You know what I mean? Like, so what like what has helped you stand out in the sales side? Sometimes I ask them, so what number in mind today that you’re over it? You just got it. You just can’t, hello sir. How are you today? This, that you do the whole thing. It’s just, I saw one of your videos actually your lean against the counter. I picked that one up from you. If you’d like to just lean against the brick column. Yeah, just just she’ll just lay back and not be that high pressure. You don’t make them ask you about the room or whatever yourself yet what do you, so what is your full, you’re going to, you’re going to get to pitch me or we can just keep talking.
Speaker 4: (16:14)
Let’s go. We got some beer or whatever. I’m a person cause I think so often people approach it as like, I’m here to sell you. I have a job to do. I’ve got to get this done. I got to file everything. I’ve been talking to a team. Okay, you need to have that when you get in the door at the door, you’re selling yourself. No, not whatever your product is. Amen. All you’re doing is trying to buy another 30 seconds. That’s it. It’s like I need to sell you on an literally standing here for another two minutes on whatever it is we’re talking about. And I think a lot of people get so stuck on what’s the script? I’m like, all right, the damn script. It’s like, what’s the script?
Speaker 4: (16:57)
That’s rookie mode. I need to get you at least the fundamentals. Now let’s break it. Because every bad a veterans as nothing but like nothing in the script. They just bring up their own dimension, their own angles. And I think that that’s what’s interesting about you is just like that. It’s like, yeah, I’m just here. Like what’s up? And it’s like, how many other knows that guy? I, you know, until I started slowly figuring it out and with a super high pressure here in Texas, I mean, it’s crazy here. It’s pleat circus when the storm hits, you know, there’s, realistically, if you’re in a one Hoa neighborhood, there’s probably a hundred contractors in there that first day. That’s crazy. You know, probably a realistic number one house was three, 400 homes. There’s probably a hundred salesmen
Speaker 5: (17:50)
And maybe 40 companies, 30 or 40 companies. But you know,
Speaker 4: (17:54)
Yeah, these guys do these big blitzes and all this stuff is fans pull up and guys get out.
Speaker 5: (17:59)
Speaker 4: (18:05)
I’m going to get a few bids.
Speaker 5: (18:06)
What’s your rebuttal to that? I tell him that’s fine. I’ll give you a bid, but you know, just do interviews. Don’t we get three estimates performed, three interviews. Who Look at the companies, make sure you check them out online. Bvb all that stuff. Website, this, that and the other. But conduct three interviews. We’re all going to do, if it’s a legitimate contractor, we’re all going to do the same job, the same way per the insurance proceeds, how they, how it’s expected. There’s a scope of what they’re telling us how to do it and what to do before. So just choose who you’re most comfortable with it, you know, it’s not about the roof is a roof for the most part or roof is a roof. Yes. There’s different products. They’re all similar. Most homeowners don’t give a shit.
Speaker 4: (18:52)
Hey, if you’re watching this whole night, but it goes back to, I mean, I speak for Dan and I and I loved Yaffe shout it out. I just am always like, if you get them off, so caught up on shingle, to me it just creates more research. It’s like a shingle to shingle. If it protects your roof, is that what you want? Your basic line is they’re all going to be good. They don’t build stuff today. It’s only going to last five years in Texas anyway. It’s going to get hit again. It’s a shame like, or not putting up there like full on.
Speaker 5: (19:23)
You can get into performance. We’re one out performs the other designer. Stuff like that. That’s fine. We’ll get, you could get there. Hopefully you get there. Yeah, but just do conduct three interviews and make sure all their credentials aren’t alone in a row. Look at the reviews, look at their website. Do they have an office?
Speaker 4: (19:39)
So speaking of reviews, I’ve kind of talked about this vanilla product, which we felt some roofing companies go from 10 reviews that a hundred reviews. I have an auto company and go from 70 to 700. Like, I mean that to me is like so impactful. Um, so if you haven’t checked out vanilla yet, I mean it’s a reach out. I mean we can get you a demo, but like I built the software simply because I’ve watched companies with, if I have 500 in every roofing company, you’re shopping me again has 30 it’s kind of like you’re really going to go with the guys that don’t do any job. You know what I mean? They might have a good job, but it’s like, obviously I’m on credibility. Like you should go with somebody who’s trusted. Right. So that’s a huge one. The other one that you said is simply you. I think a lot of people fail to sell you when you’re like you’re interviewing don’t just, I think a lot of people interview based on the website and BBB website and review, but I also think it’s important to not negate you. So how do you sell a customer on,
Speaker 5: (20:37)
Well, that’s a huge thing for me because if you’re a salesman of mine, you are a direct reflection of what the company is. So slow girls for me and not going out and hiring 50 guys at Warren’s to hopefully get five good ones. What are those other 40 idiots do to your company? Into your brand, into your reputation and you know, it’s a scary thing. So I guess my understanding of that is what’s probably kept me back and maybe it may be a Turd me maybe tell me, we’ll see. You know, it’s, I’m looking at long term, but it’s not just me, the leader, the owner of the company is that they don’t ever, they may never see me as much as I used to, like to shake everybody’s hand. You start scaling, you do hundreds of jobs a year or whatever. You’re not going to get to meet everybody. So it doesn’t matter who owns the company, it’s you that’s out in the field. So
Speaker 4: (21:30)
100% I mean it’s, you’re representing the company because that’s a huge difference. I mean, people, I look at it like, okay, there’s 10 companies, they’re are all exactly equal in line. Who Do they pick? The one that has a been a sales guy that they jive with that they want to, they want, I hope you make a commission on me like cause you’re the best.
Speaker 5: (21:49)
Like I call ourselves out in our presentation folders, we give 10 things to consider when choosing a contractor. We basically call ourselves now it was this sale. It’s ray from the appearance of the salesman at the door to be show up in clean clothes, shirt, you know, professional. It’s almost like a check. Let’s call ourselves out. Here’s all the Texas laws that you need to know. Here’s how to cancel it. Door to door sale. Let’s call us out. If I’m that guy, would I be giving you that information?
Speaker 4: (22:18)
And it just creates trust, right? Because like look, I’ll say all this stuff that the other guy is not going to tell you. I liked that. Now get secret sauce. Love it. Okay, so I shouldn’t have said, can we edit that out? Yeah, we’ll take care guys. Too. Good to, goal to goal. Okay, so a couple of last questions. If I was a brand new starting out, ret, what advice would you give me?
Speaker 5: (22:41)
Yeah, I’ve never done this. What would you tell me? I tell you, be prepared to grind if you want to be successful. I mean, sunup to sundown if you want to actually make it, especially in your early years. Some sundown, I’ll show you the rest of it. It’ll all come. But if you don’t have that willingness to work,
Speaker 4: (23:02)
so how do I stay motivated? Like there’s days where I’m like, man, it’s tough. It’s cold, it’s dark. Like what do I, what do I do to get fired back?
Speaker 5: (23:11)
That’s, that’s our job. That’s myself as a leader and everybody else, that’s your support to make sure he had the right team. You gotta make sure you’re the right team. Cool. And it’s not just not just your sales manager, sales coordinator, whatever you want to call them, that’s out there doing sales competitions. You know, you showed me the Instagram, the companies that do all the really awesome sales competitions and just keep it fun. You know, you got to keep it fun. Uh, you know, we talked about culture. Um, it just, I think that’s one thing that I’ve, I’ve definitely lacked, I like to talk about because I think,
Speaker 4: (23:46)
You know, obviously you learned more from him and I don’t think I’ve been that motivator enough. Um, you can throw money at some guys and it works. Some guys just want the status, they want to be the best. They want to be. Number one. Doesn’t matter how much money you got to read each individual guy, whether it’s you or, you know, one of the best advice that I got was there’s the golden rule, which is treat others as you would like to be treated. The platinum rule is treat others as they want to be treated. They want to be treated and you have to figure that out. Figure it out. Yeah, exactly. It’s like, does this guy care about money or is it care about? Does meet pat her on the back? Does he after the iPad or does he just want to like, some people get so fired up by you just like making them feel like 1 million bucks and they’ll go to war for you.
Speaker 4: (24:32)
Yeah. Um, okay. So one last question before you’re at, but if you could, and if one, I want to appreciate your time. This has been fun. Obviously I get to go meet cool people like you and I travel and this is always fun to do it on live. So if you have questions make sure to ask them and we’ll go through and answer a couple of things. We can figure it out anyway. So what I’m you moderate the questions once. Yeah. So ask these questions. I’m asking one last one, what would you give advice? Like if you had to give advice to the entire industry today as it is, what piece of advice would you give it? Oh man, that’s a big question. And it can, you can tailor it down and make it more specific. It could be do a rep, could be an owner, it can be a manager.
Speaker 4: (25:18)
I mean, you know, we aren’t. So it’s a cliche thing, but keep it simple, stupid kiss. It’s you. We can get lost in all of the Facebook and the Google and the APP in that. I tried to tell you this year I tried it all and I narrowed and I finally narrowed it down, but I got lost in all of it. You know, you’d go to these conferences and expos and all this stuff, man. That’s awesome. That’s awesome. That’s awesome. I want to try that. That’s, you know, that’s gonna that’s a game changer and you get lost it and then you forget about what your core is like, what you’re supposed to be doing. If they get lost her spin out of control. And that was part of my problem this year. I just, I went all in and I forgot what I was supposed to be doing.
Speaker 4: (26:04)
Yeah. To get to distracted by things that aren’t here aren’t your core competency. You know what I mean? Like there’s a core competency that we all make money when you build roofs. Yeah. You make money when you install it, you make money when you collect. I mean that’s it. So it’s like so many times you get distracted in life. Let’s try this secret sauce that I can make $1 million in a minute on a sales funnel. That if I did, you know what I mean? And it’s like, great idea. Could you could, if I devote an everything I do, but that’s not the core competency of what we are. And you have what I call like identity crisis is, which almost made is what you went through. It’s like you have like a company identity failure.
Speaker 5: (26:44)
Yeah. And then it’s like, oh wait, let’s go back to the simple basics. I in, in the most basic thing, Tim, the guy that I came here to be partners with, and uh, he always, he always said this and it always stuck to this day. Like it doesn’t matter what’s going on. If you have a problem or there’s just so more just go, solar was ran out of milk, go steal more roofs. You know, like
Speaker 6: (27:05)
That’s the simple list.
Speaker 5: (27:07)
Yeah. It solves all issues. Oh, you’re having a bad day. Oh, Sobrato stolen or anything. I feel really good after you,
Speaker 6: (27:16)
But you heard it first.