By Steve Coscia
For months, I have been traveling across the United States speaking at HVAC Conferences and conducting training sessions. While business travel can be fun, the luster soon wears down due to the myriad of uncontrollable events which can arise.
During a recent return trip from the west coast, I boarded an airplane which was filled to capacity. Feeling exhausted and tired after a day on my feet, having conducted a six-hour HVAC training session, I sought an overhead compartment for my carry-on luggage. The only available compartment had a garment bag laid horizontally across the entire length. This careless use of an entire overhead compartment for one piece of luggage seemed excessive to me, so with a conspicuously puzzled look on my face, I glanced around to see if anyone would speak up about their garment bag. I made eye contact with all the passengers in near proximity and no one owned up to this wastefulness. Seeking a resolution, I loudly asked “Is this anyone’s garment bag?” A coy, thirty-something man who averted my eye contact earlier spoke in an indignant and condescending tone and said, “Don’t screw up my clothes.” His tone of voice spoke volumes about his negative attitude.
So I gave him “the look.” Not a word was uttered and none was needed because my facial expression said it all. He meekly looked away as I carefully rearranged the overhead compartment to fit more baggage without disturbing his precious cargo.
Perhaps my early lessons about “the look” go back to childhood. My father knew exactly how to convey a warning without saying a word. He did it with “the look.” After a few seconds, which seemed more like an eternity, my dad would use his serious “tone of voice” to ensure that his message got through.
An HVAC Service manager’s facial expressions and tone of voice can convey a variety of emotions – both in person and over the phone. Non-verbal behavior need not always be serious and negative. A positive and enthusiastic glance along with a thumb up gesture conveys a message of “a job well done.”
Sensible use of non-verbal behavior and proper tone of voice is a powerful tactic for HVAC Service Managers. In the absence of preparation, prior to making an important phone call, an apprehensive and uncertain tone of voice can reveal much and diminish a manager’s vocal image over the phone.
Communication is not what you say over the phone; it is what the person hears. And the vocal image is conjured up in the imagination of the listener. What do you want people to imagine about your vocal image?
Take it to the next level and watch Steve’s video, Click HERE: http://www.coscia.com/toughmgr.php
Steve Coscia biography:
Steve Coscia helps HVACR companies make more money through increased customer retention, improved upselling and reduced on-the-job stress. He is the author of the HVAC Customer Service Handbook. A best selling author and 20-year customer service specialist, Steve presents keynote speeches and facilitates HVACR customer service workshops. To get a glimpse of Steve’s book, go here: