As a business owner in the construction industry, you probably have first-hand experience in dealing with threats from customers. Of course, sometimes a customer can genuinely be let down by your roofing company’s service. Other times they have unrealistic expectations about what a roofing business can and can’t do. There are also those difficult or opportunistic customers that small business owners have all come to know. No amount of great customer service, personal attention, or top quality work on the job site will shake them from the idea that your roofing company owes them. These customers may threaten legal action or even bodily injury to your or your workers.
Like most small business owners, roofing contractors rely on word of mouth referrals as well as positive online ratings and reviews. Unfortunately, your roofing business is vulnerable to negative reviews on social media, Google or third-party sites. Managing how to respond to negative reviews or angry and threatening customers is the key to preserving the reputation of your roofing business. Online PR companies are adamant on this point: you must respond, and you must do it quickly. Online risk management goes hand-in-hand with great customer service on the job site. You have to have both if you are going to guard against financial losses.
Here’s some useful advice from an expert. In his book, If It Wasn’t for the Customers I’d Really Like This Job, Robert Bacal suggests using the CARP technique. This acronym stands for Control, Acknowledge, Refocus, and Problem Solve. As a general rule, it is vital to keep your cool in all situations.
Across all trades, from the general contractor to the plumber to roofing contractors, unhappy customers tend to respond with the same cliché threats. They say, I will …
Many do go the legal route, which is simply a nuisance when you have general liability insurance coverage. A reputable insurance company will have advised you to invest in liability coverage tailored for your roofing company’s needs. This is likely to be a Business Owners Policy that includes General Liability Insurance as well Commercial Property Insurance coverage.
General Liability Insurance coverage is necessary for all commercial businesses (even your roofing contractor business) as it provides third-party bodily injury as well as property damage coverage. This form typically includes business insurance coverage for both premises and products and completed operations exposures.
Your Business Owners Policy might not be enough insurance coverage for a roofing business. A roofing business’s insurance policy program may include Employee Dishonesty insurance coverage that provides protection from employees stealing equipment from the job site. A Commercial Auto Insurance Policy is important if you use your vehicle in your roofing business. Of course, workers compensation is required by law in most states.
But, long before the angry customer leaves the job site on their way to their lawyer, the way you respond to their threats makes the ultimate difference in outcome. Let’s have another look at CARP and how it can guide a business owner like yourself to avoid conflict.
This technique can work on the job site, when the customer calls, or even when faced with online complaints against your roofing business. If you make promises to do something once they leave the job site, make sure that you do, otherwise you’ll find yourself right back where you began, only worse.
Although you cannot physically stop a client from pursuing this course of action, you can lessen your builders risk and the chances of it coming to this. And, if your great customer service doesn’t change their mind, you can rely on your roofing contractor insurance to protect you against liability claims.
Figuring out appropriate ways of communicating effectively with upset clients can prevent further action from being taken. Risk management through communication is a vital tool for business owners, whether in real life or online. Engaging with the complaint can change the course of any dialogue from negative to positive. Ultimately, diplomatic communication and roofing contractors insurance coverage will protect your roofing company from liability claims.
ASK JOHN FOR THE BEST INSURANCE QUOTE YOU’LL GET ALL DAY!