In my not so long career in car refinishing trade I have heard these words very often. What changes is the number of years in business. It is usually 20 years at least, even if the guy in front of you is in his early 30s. Whether you speak to a car sprayer or automotive paints trader, they are all too experienced to learn. Auto body repair and refinish business has been rapidly changing over the last decades. Be it environmental laws or natural industry’s evolution, car paint and related materials are not the same, equipment is different, and therefore having only experience is not enough to succeed.
So, if you are sales rep or a technician, you should be ready to face this kind of customer's objection. It is good for you and your employer, and it is very important and beneficial for your customer, if the bridge between the generations is built.
How to overcome the reluctance from your potential customer to adopt new products or practices?
Below you can find a few important steps to follow:
– Avoid exhortative tone. Explain that you are there not to teach them how to do their job, but to help to do it quicker, more profitable and even enjoyable
– Never joke about the way people work. You don't know if they have been trained well or ever had opportunities to grow professionally.
-Bring examples of other professionals, who succeeded with the new product or service
– Ask and even more importantly listen to the customer's problems and needs
– A good and positive sense of humor is an asset to face objections and break the ice
– Mention that the way we sprayed cars and materials available have improved drastically over the last decades, so there is always a space for positive change in the way you work
– If possible, leave the new product or piece of equipment for trial. Good chance is that they will never want to give it back…
I visited Guinness brewery museum in Dublin a few weeks ago, and I really liked what Rupert Guinness once said:
“We are brewers and always have been; and in our brewing we have sought, and we seek, to ally the traditions and craftsmanship of the past with the best that science has to teach us.”
Try to apply these words to your business, use the experience of the past with what the present can offer you now.