Re: Home service calls

Discussion in 'A+ Certification' started by -=MoJo=Master=-, Jul 22, 2003.

  1. Lee Parsons <> wrote in
    news::


    Good on you Lee. Its nice to see someone with some ethics and a good
    attitude. I couldnt agree more about helping people.


    > Someone here was bemoaning home service calls -- the dusty dark corner
    > where the computer sits, the kitchen chair, the crowded space, etc.
    >
    > I *love* home service calls and they're my bread-and-butter.
    >
    > A local ISP provides home calls, but the customer has to pay almost
    > $50 for the trip out and then $95/hour.
    >
    > I charge no trip fee and less per hour, and I'm busy most of the time.
    > But I enjoy the service. A lot of my clients in our rural mountain
    > area are elderly folks who have one or two computers in their homes,
    > have come to computing late in life and love the information and
    > communication it gives them.
    > But they aren't techs, and when there's a problem they need a
    > little help. It's often something small, probably not worth the time
    > of your big-shop folks. Yes, it's not always the best of conditions,
    > but they have what they have and I refuse to talk down to them or
    > ignore their need for service.
    > If I need a better chair, I ask for it. If I need a drink of
    > water, I ask for it (most of the time they offer). I also ask for the
    > vacuum cleaner when approprate!
    > A lot of them want to use the computer, but have no interest in
    > learning the details of fixing it, and have come to rely on me for
    > fixing those little gremlins that come up once in awhile. I also help
    > them learn to use their machines and software. In return, I've gotten
    > to know a lot of good folks in my region, made money without raping
    > them, and enjoy a good reputation. Word of mouth has been phenominal.
    >
    > Business repairs may make you rich and be easier to work on, but don't
    > ignore the satisfaction that can come from helping neighbors and doing
    > a little teaching, too.
    >
    > Lee
    >
     
    -=MoJo=Master=-, Jul 22, 2003
    #1
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  2. -=MoJo=Master=-

    Lee Parsons Guest

    On Wed, 23 Jul 2003 11:43:01 -0400, "techshare" <>
    wrote:

    >???
    >
    >If Lee is an experienced PROFESSIONAL running a BUSINESS, then he should be
    >CHARGING for the work. Do not wonder why the tech field is so crummy. It is
    >because of people like Lee.



    Who said I didn't charge? I most certainly do. Perhaps you should know
    what in the hell you're talking about before you go throwing insults
    around. (Hey I understand THAT day may never come!).



    >See, here is how it goes ... ya got "Lee" out there in some area doing work
    >on the cheap. On the other hand, you have guys like "Ghost" and I who have a
    >real business with real overhead and real experienced professionals. We
    >can't stay in business lest we charge ... I might add like every other
    >g*ddam business out there BESIDES computer repair.
    >
    >Concluding in "Lee's" words, he is not raping the customer ... he is raping
    >the very field he works in and all of us along with it.


    And you are full of crap.

    If you mean that I don't charge $95 a fucking hour like the
    "professional" shop in this area, you're right. If people want to pay
    that, they'll go see a doctor.
     
    Lee Parsons, Jul 23, 2003
    #2
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  3. -=MoJo=Master=-

    Lee Parsons Guest

    On Wed, 23 Jul 2003 11:43:01 -0400, "techshare" <>
    wrote:

    >When you call a plumber out to "hook up some pipes" ... do you get a deal?!
    >Hell no! Does it matter where you live?! NO.



    If one plumber charges $95 an hour and another charges $50, and both
    are knowledgable and certified, who are you going to call?

    I run my business my way, you run yours. I make a good living at it
    and don't have to run you down or attack you to justify myself.
    Apparently you do.
     
    Lee Parsons, Jul 23, 2003
    #3
  4. -=MoJo=Master=-

    Ghost Guest

    Not for nothing...

    ....and I am not saying anyone posting here is doing this, but reading some
    of the recent posts reminded me of something......

    Businesses do not really mind fair competition. It is the basis for
    professional organizations and even good working relationships.

    However, undercutting is a serious problem and while at first seems like a
    good business practice, in the long run it is not.

    Undercutting is severely undercutting the competition pricing. What this
    means is this- if the AVERAGE service call price in your general area is
    lets say 75 an hour, and you charge 25 an hour- that is undercutting.

    You might think of this as a sound business practice, but it is wrong and
    makes you enemies. This is as bad as openly bad-mouthing your
    competition.

    Why is this bad? Well, for starters, it indicates a lack of
    professionalism. If you are a professional, then you should be paid as a
    professional. But, more than that, when you make enemies of your
    competition, you can hurt yourself more than them.

    There will come a time when you will need something from one of your
    competitors. You might need a part for a job. If you make enemies of
    them, they will not sell it to you.

    You might need professional advice. Perhaps something on a job has you
    stumped. Could you call a tech over at another shop for help? SUppose
    you get a customer that is running a Novell network, and you have no
    Novell experience.

    Perhaps you get a big job- perhaps a bit too big for one man to handle.
    Can you "hire out" or sub-contract part of the job to the shop down the
    street? Wouldnt it be better to foster a good working relationship with
    them and share ina a big job, rather than a bog job go to someone else?

    What about sharing bad customer information? Every once in a while you
    get a customer who is just beyond belief, and perhaps refuses to pay.
    Wouldn't it be nice to share this infrmation, or to have had it shared
    with you beforehand?

    Suppose you need to hire someone? Wouldn't it be nice to get "special"
    information from a previous employer if that employer is your
    competition? Under US law, you cannot say anything about a previous
    employer other than confirming hire and temrination dates, and whether or
    not that employee might be considered for rehire (lawsuits abound for
    bad-mouthing previous employees). Big deal. That information doesnt
    really help you much when making decisions. Wouldn't it be nice to know
    if this employee was a problem child, or a thief, or even competitant?

    Oh, and another thing. Suppose your buisiness fails- for whatever
    reason. You might need a job now. Where you gonna go? Do you think a
    competitor shop is going to hire you after causing them all that grief?

    In my area, I have a fairly decent working relationship with all my
    competition. While we are not out swapping spit behind the bleachers and
    taking long showers together, we are professional with each other. They
    refer customers to me if the customer's needs are not a fit for them. For
    instance, I also work on Macs. They all refer Mac customers to me.
    Occasionally, I need a part right away- be it an external modem, KVM
    cables, or whatever. I can- and do- buy (at a professional discount) from
    them at times. I have an abundance of some old parts- stuff that is not
    readily available anymore. Things like old 30 pin and old 72 pin RAM, old
    1GB or 2GB HDDs, AT power supplies, etc. Occasionally, they come to me
    for those parts.

    So, always be a professional!






    In article <>, "Glenn \(SBfan2000\)"
    <> wrote:

    > Boo Hoo
    >
    > "techshare" <> wrote in message
    > news:...
    > > ???
    > >
    > > If Lee is an experienced PROFESSIONAL running a BUSINESS, then he should

    > be
    > > CHARGING for the work. Do not wonder why the tech field is so crummy. It

    > is
    > > because of people like Lee.
    > >
    > > When you call a plumber out to "hook up some pipes" ... do you get a

    > deal?!
    > > Hell no! Does it matter where you live?! NO.
    > >
    > > See, here is how it goes ... ya got "Lee" out there in some area doing

    > work
    > > on the cheap. On the other hand, you have guys like "Ghost" and I who have

    > a
    > > real business with real overhead and real experienced professionals. We
    > > can't stay in business lest we charge ... I might add like every other
    > > g*ddam business out there BESIDES computer repair.
    > >
    > > Concluding in "Lee's" words, he is not raping the customer ... he is

    > raping
    > > the very field he works in and all of us along with it.
    > > "-=MoJo=Master=-" <> wrote in message
    > > news:Xns93C0890EA712DAgEnTMAN@24.69.255.211...
    > > > Lee Parsons <> wrote in
    > > > news::
    > > >
    > > >
    > > > Good on you Lee. Its nice to see someone with some ethics and a good
    > > > attitude. I couldnt agree more about helping people.
    > > >
    > > >
    > > > > Someone here was bemoaning home service calls -- the dusty dark corner
    > > > > where the computer sits, the kitchen chair, the crowded space, etc.
    > > > >
    > > > > I *love* home service calls and they're my bread-and-butter.
    > > > >
    > > > > A local ISP provides home calls, but the customer has to pay almost
    > > > > $50 for the trip out and then $95/hour.
    > > > >
    > > > > I charge no trip fee and less per hour, and I'm busy most of the time.
    > > > > But I enjoy the service. A lot of my clients in our rural mountain
    > > > > area are elderly folks who have one or two computers in their homes,
    > > > > have come to computing late in life and love the information and
    > > > > communication it gives them.
    > > > > But they aren't techs, and when there's a problem they need a
    > > > > little help. It's often something small, probably not worth the time
    > > > > of your big-shop folks. Yes, it's not always the best of conditions,
    > > > > but they have what they have and I refuse to talk down to them or
    > > > > ignore their need for service.
    > > > > If I need a better chair, I ask for it. If I need a drink of
    > > > > water, I ask for it (most of the time they offer). I also ask for the
    > > > > vacuum cleaner when approprate!
    > > > > A lot of them want to use the computer, but have no interest in
    > > > > learning the details of fixing it, and have come to rely on me for
    > > > > fixing those little gremlins that come up once in awhile. I also help
    > > > > them learn to use their machines and software. In return, I've gotten
    > > > > to know a lot of good folks in my region, made money without raping
    > > > > them, and enjoy a good reputation. Word of mouth has been phenominal.
    > > > >
    > > > > Business repairs may make you rich and be easier to work on, but don't
    > > > > ignore the satisfaction that can come from helping neighbors and doing
    > > > > a little teaching, too.
    > > > >
    > > > > Lee
    > > > >
    > > >

    > >
    > >
     
    Ghost, Jul 24, 2003
    #4
  5. -=MoJo=Master=-

    Lee Parsons Guest

    On Thu, 24 Jul 2003 13:14:01 GMT, (Ghost) wrote:

    >Businesses do not really mind fair competition. It is the basis for
    >professional organizations and even good working relationships.


    Very true. Competition is the basis of our business way of life.


    >Undercutting is severely undercutting the competition pricing. What this
    >means is this- if the AVERAGE service call price in your general area is
    >lets say 75 an hour, and you charge 25 an hour- that is undercutting.
    >
    >You might think of this as a sound business practice, but it is wrong and
    >makes you enemies. This is as bad as openly bad-mouthing your
    >competition.


    Actually, the general message I get from what you wrote is a subtle
    stifling of competition by tacit agreement and perhaps even
    price-fixing.

    I'm not the cheapest tech around, believe me. I'm actually near the
    average for this area, but I do home calls as a primary part of my
    business. As one person here said, they don't like home calls so they
    try to discourage or refuse them if possible.


    >You might need professional advice. Perhaps something on a job has you
    >stumped. Could you call a tech over at another shop for help? SUppose
    >you get a customer that is running a Novell network, and you have no
    >Novell experience.


    I have actually called in a tech from the "big guys" in this area
    once, and we worked well together. I paid their price, of course, but
    learned something in exchange and got the problem solved for the
    customer.

    >So, always be a professional!


    I am. And have been since 1984 when I left Hewlett Packard.
    I do not, however, confuse service rates and "overhead" with being a
    professional. (I have overhead, even though another poster ASSumed
    otherwise).

    I refer business to the "big guys," and they've sent people to me.
    We've got a fine relationship, but I won't charge people what I
    consider an excessive rate in order to appease or support the
    competition.

    Lee
     
    Lee Parsons, Jul 24, 2003
    #5
  6. -=MoJo=Master=-

    techshare Guest

    My point remains ... Lee's silly insults have no effect on me. Let's draw
    out a few more points :

    - When I said charge , I mean CHARGE. This means like a REAL business will
    do and does. Even an outfit with sorry techs such as Compusa charges a flat
    rate of nearly 100 to fix a PC. I have no idea what they might include with
    the flat rate, but that is beside the point. They charge 100 up front to
    even look at the machine in shop ... and look who they have looking at the
    machines ! :-0 Their "Certified Network Technician" told me that they didn't
    stock stranded patch cable (they do). Furthermore, he told me that solid
    core CAT5 should be used to make patch cables! Shocking ignorance!

    - Lee now claims he has overhead in the computer service business. OK, Lee
    do you have a DISPLAY yellow page ad. These typically run at least
    $500/month for something the size of a credit card. How about a shop that is
    separate from your home? We all know what that can cost. To top that off,
    thanks to all the "techs" that don't charge much ... it seems that almost
    all customers seem to think that fixing a computer in a shop should be sooo
    much cheaper! :-/ Oh, and what about formal education and certification in
    computers and/or computer science? I don't know about Lee, but everyone has
    charged me for this stuff ... and to top it off you have to go to class,
    pass tests, etc... ;-) Yeah, see that's how everything else works.

    - To all who think the undercutting is healthy competition. F U. Just like
    Ghost said, we aren't happy with the undercutters. We are selling computer
    SERVICE. I'm not running a large retail outfit. This is NOT high volume low
    margin. You are just displaying your complete lack of business knowledge.

    - Closing out, I think any doubters should go see if they can find that
    "half time" attorney or doctor that will give their services for less than
    half of the average rate.
    "Drew" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    >
    > I wouldn't call Lee a rapist. I'd call his way of doing business
    > healthy competition. If you can't match the reliability and prices
    > for services tendered to a customer, why shouldn't they go elsewhere
    > to a competitor like Lee who will? If you don't like what Lee is
    > doing, learn to provide better service and prices of your own rather
    > than posting articles to flame and insult him. That's definitely not
    > going to improve your business.
    >
    > Drew
    >
    >
    > On Wed, 23 Jul 2003 11:43:01 -0400, "techshare" <>
    > wrote:
    >
    > >???
    > >
    > >If Lee is an experienced PROFESSIONAL running a BUSINESS, then he should

    be
    > >CHARGING for the work. Do not wonder why the tech field is so crummy. It

    is
    > >because of people like Lee.
    > >
    > >When you call a plumber out to "hook up some pipes" ... do you get a

    deal?!
    > >Hell no! Does it matter where you live?! NO.
    > >
    > >See, here is how it goes ... ya got "Lee" out there in some area doing

    work
    > >on the cheap. On the other hand, you have guys like "Ghost" and I who

    have a
    > >real business with real overhead and real experienced professionals. We
    > >can't stay in business lest we charge ... I might add like every other
    > >g*ddam business out there BESIDES computer repair.
    > >
    > >Concluding in "Lee's" words, he is not raping the customer ... he is

    raping
    > >the very field he works in and all of us along with it.
    > >"-=MoJo=Master=-" <> wrote in message
    > >news:Xns93C0890EA712DAgEnTMAN@24.69.255.211...
    > >> Lee Parsons <> wrote in
    > >> news::
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> Good on you Lee. Its nice to see someone with some ethics and a good
    > >> attitude. I couldnt agree more about helping people.
    > >>
    > >>
    > >> > Someone here was bemoaning home service calls -- the dusty dark

    corner
    > >> > where the computer sits, the kitchen chair, the crowded space, etc.
    > >> >
    > >> > I *love* home service calls and they're my bread-and-butter.
    > >> >
    > >> > A local ISP provides home calls, but the customer has to pay almost
    > >> > $50 for the trip out and then $95/hour.
    > >> >
    > >> > I charge no trip fee and less per hour, and I'm busy most of the

    time.
    > >> > But I enjoy the service. A lot of my clients in our rural mountain
    > >> > area are elderly folks who have one or two computers in their homes,
    > >> > have come to computing late in life and love the information and
    > >> > communication it gives them.
    > >> > But they aren't techs, and when there's a problem they need a
    > >> > little help. It's often something small, probably not worth the time
    > >> > of your big-shop folks. Yes, it's not always the best of conditions,
    > >> > but they have what they have and I refuse to talk down to them or
    > >> > ignore their need for service.
    > >> > If I need a better chair, I ask for it. If I need a drink of
    > >> > water, I ask for it (most of the time they offer). I also ask for the
    > >> > vacuum cleaner when approprate!
    > >> > A lot of them want to use the computer, but have no interest in
    > >> > learning the details of fixing it, and have come to rely on me for
    > >> > fixing those little gremlins that come up once in awhile. I also help
    > >> > them learn to use their machines and software. In return, I've gotten
    > >> > to know a lot of good folks in my region, made money without raping
    > >> > them, and enjoy a good reputation. Word of mouth has been phenominal.
    > >> >
    > >> > Business repairs may make you rich and be easier to work on, but

    don't
    > >> > ignore the satisfaction that can come from helping neighbors and

    doing
    > >> > a little teaching, too.
    > >> >
    > >> > Lee
    > >> >
    > >>

    > >

    >
     
    techshare, Jul 24, 2003
    #6
  7. -=MoJo=Master=-

    techshare Guest

    No, I don't call people names that call my business ... but I'll call you an
    idiot ... right here! :)
    "Drew" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > On Fri, 25 Jul 2003 00:22:14 GMT, (Ghost) wrote:
    >
    > >In article <>, "techshare"
    > ><> wrote:
    > >
    > >> Oh, and another important point I just have to add ....
    > >>
    > >> Since advertising in the YP, I get calls from people with computer

    problems
    > >> that think they should get advice, on site service, in shop service, or

    any
    > >> of the above FOR FREE. I get these calls on a daily basis, and some of

    these
    > >> jerks literally tell me up front that they aren't planning on paying
    > >> anything. I'd like to see anyone in this group explain the real reason

    for
    > >> that ... I can!

    > >
    > >
    > >They call you too??? lol Prolly the saem people making those calls!!!

    lol
    > >
    > >Actually, if it doesnt take too long, I will talk to them over the phone.
    > >Ya never know when you might convert them to a paying customer.

    >
    > The odds of you converting them to customers are pretty thin if they
    > are called jerks and insulted as they have been in this thread.
    >
    > >
    > >Also, do not overlook the possiblity of ppl calling you up for 'free
    > >advice' who are merely testing you to see if a- you are knowledgeable,

    and
    > >b- if you are willing to help out on little things without charging them
    > >out the ying yang. Some of my larger commercial accounts started out
    > >similar to this- testing me first. Now I have their complete trust and
    > >loyalty- and all their business.
    > >
    > >Then again, there are a bunch of unsocial jerks who also think they

    should
    > >get free help all the time.

    >
     
    techshare, Jul 25, 2003
    #7
  8. give it a rest techshare, not only is your business ripping off the e.u. but
    then its people like you who rip off the damn tech you send out to do the
    work.I've been doing this for oh about 14 yrs and have learned if you are
    going to make any money work for yourself . its good to see other techs not
    taking the crumbs you leave for them and if anyone is ripping off the tech
    field it WOULD BE YOU MOUTH !!




    "techshare" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > ???
    >
    > If Lee is an experienced PROFESSIONAL running a BUSINESS, then he should

    be
    > CHARGING for the work. Do not wonder why the tech field is so crummy. It

    is
    > because of people like Lee.
    >
    > When you call a plumber out to "hook up some pipes" ... do you get a

    deal?!
    > Hell no! Does it matter where you live?! NO.
    >
    > See, here is how it goes ... ya got "Lee" out there in some area doing

    work
    > on the cheap. On the other hand, you have guys like "Ghost" and I who have

    a
    > real business with real overhead and real experienced professionals. We
    > can't stay in business lest we charge ... I might add like every other
    > g*ddam business out there BESIDES computer repair.
    >
    > Concluding in "Lee's" words, he is not raping the customer ... he is

    raping
    > the very field he works in and all of us along with it.
    > "-=MoJo=Master=-" <> wrote in message
    > news:Xns93C0890EA712DAgEnTMAN@24.69.255.211...
    > > Lee Parsons <> wrote in
    > > news::
    > >
    > >
    > > Good on you Lee. Its nice to see someone with some ethics and a good
    > > attitude. I couldnt agree more about helping people.
    > >
    > >
    > > > Someone here was bemoaning home service calls -- the dusty dark corner
    > > > where the computer sits, the kitchen chair, the crowded space, etc.
    > > >
    > > > I *love* home service calls and they're my bread-and-butter.
    > > >
    > > > A local ISP provides home calls, but the customer has to pay almost
    > > > $50 for the trip out and then $95/hour.
    > > >
    > > > I charge no trip fee and less per hour, and I'm busy most of the time.
    > > > But I enjoy the service. A lot of my clients in our rural mountain
    > > > area are elderly folks who have one or two computers in their homes,
    > > > have come to computing late in life and love the information and
    > > > communication it gives them.
    > > > But they aren't techs, and when there's a problem they need a
    > > > little help. It's often something small, probably not worth the time
    > > > of your big-shop folks. Yes, it's not always the best of conditions,
    > > > but they have what they have and I refuse to talk down to them or
    > > > ignore their need for service.
    > > > If I need a better chair, I ask for it. If I need a drink of
    > > > water, I ask for it (most of the time they offer). I also ask for the
    > > > vacuum cleaner when approprate!
    > > > A lot of them want to use the computer, but have no interest in
    > > > learning the details of fixing it, and have come to rely on me for
    > > > fixing those little gremlins that come up once in awhile. I also help
    > > > them learn to use their machines and software. In return, I've gotten
    > > > to know a lot of good folks in my region, made money without raping
    > > > them, and enjoy a good reputation. Word of mouth has been phenominal.
    > > >
    > > > Business repairs may make you rich and be easier to work on, but don't
    > > > ignore the satisfaction that can come from helping neighbors and doing
    > > > a little teaching, too.
    > > >
    > > > Lee
    > > >

    > >

    >
    >
     
    RICHARD reason, Jul 31, 2003
    #8
  9. -=MoJo=Master=-

    Yoda Guest

    I'm just a lurker, studying for my exams, but prior to this avocation, I was
    in business for 35 years. Ghost hits it right on the nose. People don't
    respect "cheap" they figure they're getting what they pay for. What you're
    doing by lowering your prices is attracting bottom feeders. You're not going
    to make a living with them.
    Yode
     
    Yoda, Aug 18, 2003
    #9
    1. Advertising

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