Episode 005: #OurTechnicians AreDifferent – Cellular Repair School

Episode 005: #OurTechnicians AreDifferent

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

In this episode we explore technician development and how to use knowledge to differentiate yourself in a seemingly crowded marketplace.

What You'll Learn:

The importance of developing yourself and your people both technically and professionally and how that impacts your company.  Bottom line, there is much more to being a cell phone repair "technician" than twisting screws and swapping screens.

AskWill+Josh 005 EPISODE TRANSCRIPT:


Will: Microphone's rolling

Josh: Check one.

Will: Check two.

Josh: All right, we're ready to do it. Here we go, another live episode.

Will: Let's do it man, another live episode coming from the Ask WillandJosh Show. We want to welcome you guys, you know we're always to trying to give you guys great information.

Josh: Welcome to the inside.

Will: Welcome to the inside.

Josh: Right?

Will: That's right, so what are we talking about today? Josh, what do we want to get into today? What do we want to bring to the people as far as information?

Josh: Man, you know it's kind of crazy is I don't know. I really don't know. Normally we plan the content out.

Will: Right.

Josh: But with everything that has been going on we don't have much time to kind of plan the content.

Will: We've been very busy, yeah. For sure.

Josh: Thinking about it I think actually because I've seen the campaign that we've been on which is #ourtechniciansaredifferent.

Will: #ourtechnicianaredifferent.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: So what is that, right? Because you know coming from obviously you know what we're all about here.

Will: Right.

Josh: This is cellphone repair, mobility repair.

Will: Yes.

Josh: At the highest level of all these different things, so what is that, why is that important, what does that mean exactly our technicians are different?

Will: I think it is important to bring people in that too, because I think people don't really see a lot of how we do business at the level we do it, and I think they don't see technicians at this level quite often. So, it's important to help people understand, and I hope you guys remember about us, and if this is your first time tuning in to us, you have to understand it, Josh and I have a really really diverse background in this industry and what I mean by that is we've done it from the typical, I would say typical shop perspective.

Josh: Yeah, retail shop.

Will: The retail shop's perspective. We've done it from the school education on site perspective and

Josh: Mobile repairs.

Will: Mobile repairs.

Josh: We did the mobile repairs.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Not us personally, but our team.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right?

Will: We've done pretty much at all. We've done it like I said on site, we've done it online, so we've seen the result of technicians, and at this point right now we do what I will refer to and Josh you correct me if I'm wrong, but I will kind of call this a kind of platform level. What would be a better word for what we do right now?

Josh: Well, that's tier 1.

Will: It's a tier 1.

Josh: It's a tier 1 level, right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Because we're serving the highest, the highest.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: And you really don't get any higher than the carriers.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right? And the large insurance companies.

Will: Yes.

Josh: So this is tier 1.

Will: Exactly and with that being said at tier 1, the number of technicians we're going to have is significantly higher than the number of technicians you would have let's say at a typical repair store for our customers.

Josh: Right.

Will: I would say. And so the importance of making sure that technicians understand what we value is very very important, and I think what we're going to talk about today is that like what exactly do we value in the standards, and what we see a great technician or a technician, I guess for lack of a better word, what would we say a certified technician, maybe a well-rounded technician.

Josh: I mean come on, the real definition of technician is someone who is a professional with what they do.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right?

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Like name me an industry where someone can call themselves a technician and there's not some kind of credentials go behind them.

Will: That's true.

Josh: Right, so let's just let's cut the chase.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: That most of the so called technicians out there aren't technicians.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right and that's not a knock on anybody.

Will: Right.

Josh: Unless you fit into that box.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah, yeah, exactly.

Josh: And ultimately at the end of the day it comes down to because you don't have all the skill sets.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right? Like yeah, you might be really good at taking a couple of screws out and doing swap tronics

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Where I can take these six screws out or actually on an iPhone I can take two screws out, right?

Will: And swap it out, yeah.

Josh: And swap it out and disconnect, boom, boom, where I disconnect a couple of things and put it back in.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: It's not a technician, man.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: That's not a technician at the end of the day, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: And there's a lot of information, there are lots of other guys out there who say that same sort of thing, and we've been advocates for that since day one.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Again, more power to you if that's how you build your business. This is a great business that allows you to do that, at least it used to be, all right.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: We predicted this years ago that it was going to get more difficult for those types of businesses to continue to survive.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right? You got to have things that differentiate yourself. So I think, for me I think it's an important thing to kind of talk about why, why we keep saying our technicians are different, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: Where does that even comes from? Let's just go to the background.

Will: Well, again like I said if you look at our background and if you look out our experience that the technicians we currently certify, and the customers we currently serve are at a different level, because their expectations and their requirements as far as what they're looking for, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: Is significantly higher.

Josh: Give me an example what does that mean?

Will: Well, it means that the quality, right? If you want to talk about the quality of parts, quality of service, quality of the finished product, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: Is a deeper or it's a higher expectation and it's actually checked or what we call quality checked, right? At a different level, right? And with that being said, we've seen, at many levels, again we started in the retail space.

Josh: Right.

Will: And one thing we see if the significant difference in the expectation of a customer at the retail, right, versus the what we call tier 1 level.

Josh: Right.

Will: The expectation is totally different.

Josh: So to kind of dive into that, right? Let's just lay it out there. So, one of the main difference that we see is in the retail side of it customer walks in with a broken screen, I just want to walk out with a fixed screen and as far as I know everything is still good.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: At the tier 1 level that's not enough.

Will: Right.

Josh: Cosmetically it has to meet a certain grade. RF testing has to be within, so it's one thing to put a screen in, it's another thing to show okay, did that screen diminish the power capacity of the battery.

Will: Right.

Josh: Does the phone still receive and sends signals at the same strength that it’s supposed to based on OEM specification.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Are the luminance and the brightness of the screen's intact, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: Is it fit and finish, can I dunk it underwater for an hour and water not leak into this thing, right?

Will: (), yeah.

Josh: On the B to C side, right? That's not a requirement for repair shops.

Will: Right.

Josh: Because, and it's I get it on a realistic level, like what customer's going to leave their phone under a meter of water for an hour.

Will: Exactly, exactly.

Josh: They are not doing that.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right? But at our level that's required by the customers.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right? Because it has to perform at an OEM level, as if it was a brand new device.

Will: Yeah. And just talking specifically I mean if you guys want to really get technical and get into the technical aspect of it, Josh has talked about what we called WPT which is the water and making sure it doesn't, it's water resistant, right?

Josh: Right, waterproof test.

Will: Waterproof test. Right, and with that being said it's gotten so much to the point where just to remove let's say the back of certain devices, right?

Josh: Right, right, any device that's glued.

Will: Any device that's glued.

Josh: Any IP 67 or 68 rated device has a sealed back now which is why you see all the new devices they have that adhesive glass back for two reasons, right?

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Wireless charging.

Will: Wireless charging.

Josh: And waterproofing.

Will: Yes and waterproofing. Now, with that being said, right? The expectation of a customer at that level that we're talking about, right? They want if you're going to do any repair, even if you're going to change, let's say the battery, right? What you have to do to access the battery is obviously remove that back.

Josh: That's right.

Will: Right? And to remove that back, it means you have to take the back off which is going to break the seal, the adhesive, and when you replace that battery and you put that seal back on, that seal has to effectively resist water going back in.

Josh: Yeah, that whole process has to be just like it came brand new out of the factory.

Will: At a retail level, is that important?

Josh: Yeah, the customers thought, I mean and that's semantics, right?

Will: And it's kind of the question. Is that important?

Josh: Well, it kind of is.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right? Like how many times do you take your car to the shop and you're okay with not performing the way that it was supposed to when BMW made it or Honda made it or whoever.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right? Like when do you make those trade-offs, maybe when it gets a lot older and you're already thinking about getting a new car anyways, right?

Will: Right

Josh: Then it's just I just want to keep it running.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right, but again that's your choice if you're an informed consumer and the repair shops are doing what they are supposed to do.

Will: You're right.

Josh: So here we go into this, here we go, here we go.

Will: Did we just open, did we just open a can?

Josh: Yeah.

Will: Did we just?

Josh: Yeah, it ain't no whoop can. It's a can of Pandora’s Box. that box of worms that we end up getting to.

Will: Do we honestly want to be the ones that bring this kind of information to the masses to know?

Josh: I thought that was our mission here is.

Will: I mean I know and we've always talk about it, but do we really want to take that on our show because I think we do. And the reason why I say that is because it is kind of like Josh said it's kind of Pandora’s box where it's this thing of who is your customer, what's the expectation and what type of energy, what type of time, what type of education, what type of money are you going to put in to satisfying that expectation.

Josh: Right.

Will: Right? And you have to make that decision, and really that decision is totally up to you, and what I see a lot of times is people get in this place, they get into this place of thinking that it's a cookie cutter, it's one size fits all, so you'll see a lot out there, you'll see a lot of times when people, they have their ideas about what a technician should be, what education in this space should be, what education in this space should not be, and what's required and what you should be spending your money on, what you shouldn’t be spending your money, what you should be paying attention to, what you shouldn’t be paying attention to, but at the end of the day I think what you really have to take into consideration is who your customer is, number one, what that expectation is, and at the end of the day you have to be able to be comfortable with the decision you make as far as servicing that customer.

Josh: Right, but everybody is going to do it with the information that they have.

Will: That's true.

Josh: Right? So here we go.

Will: So here we go.

Josh: To bring it full circle, why are our technicians different which is why we started this, right? So what does it mean exactly?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: What does that even stem from?

Will: Our technicians are different because the level of training and information that they are exposed to, that they are trained by, that they are measured by when we talk about fundamentals, which is very important, when we talk about standards, which is very important.

Josh: Well, Will there is no standards in this industry.

Will: Well, there are not standards in this industry.

Josh: Right, so everybody says ().

Will: But there are standards by which we perform.

Josh: Right.

Will: Because there are standards that we're held against.

Josh: Exactly.

Will: Right?

Josh: Exactly.

Will: So we have to make sure that our technicians regardless of who it is, how they come in, what experience they have are brought up to first of all understand what those standards are, right? Agree to meet us at those fundamentals and those standards and work every diligently and hard to bring themselves up to those standards. And what we do is we make it a priority and a, what's the word? We make it a necessity.

Josh: A focus, yeah.

Will: A focus, to make sure that our technicians are held to those standards, and we kind of have to do that based on who our customer is.

Josh: Right.

Will: Our customer has a very high level of expectation, so to get to the point of the question of why our technicians are different is because we've seen based on our experience how different, right? When you apply the principles and the standards to training and education in different avenues, and this example it's how we used to do it with the store when we first started and we really didn't know how important it was to the evolution of education that we got, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: In the experience, and then applying that education and the importance of that education to the technicians that we have today that we serve today.

Josh: Right.

Will: And we see the results, right? There's a distinctive difference, a distinctive difference in the results of our technicians and yesterday.

Josh: For sure.

Will: Versus our technicians of today.

Josh: Well, and to that point. It's a fantastic point. To that point, for us our evolution has been more focused on the development of our people.

Will: Right.

Josh: As we understood, right, that again teamwork makes the dream work.

Will: For sure.

Josh: Right? And that to build of anything significance requires more than just a handful of people.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: In our mission and what we're trying to accomplish, so through the years what we've figured out is we really got to learn how to invest in people and help them develop.

Will: Right?

Josh: Right? The question I want to ask, so I'm going to play devil’s advocate tonight.

Will: Yeah, you do that, you do that and I'm in the hot seat tonight.

Josh: Yeah, yeah, so watch and sweat.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: We got the close up.

Will: If I can't answer it, I'm going to throw it right back at him just letting you guys know.

Josh: Because I know the answers, that's why I'm asking the questions, right? But watch the beads form on his forehead as we go.

Will: Let's do it, let's do it, let's do it.

Josh: All right, so question number one.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Mr. Agnew.

Will: Yes, sir.

Josh: All right, why, but why is this important like why has this been a focus for us, right? Because it never before, I mean this isn't new, we've been in the forefront and we’ve been quiet for a couple of years up until last month or so, right? As we make our podcasts and things that we're working on.

Will: Right.

Josh: Al right, but why all of a sudden is this an important initiative to be #ourtechniciansaredifferent?

Will: Oh my god.

Josh: Is it because we call them different?

Will: It's got a little hot in here.

Josh: Everything that you just answered is like that's what we think.

Will: Right.

Josh: So is it what we think that's why our technicians are different, because that's what Will and Josh think?

Will: I don't think so, I think it's because again it goes back to experience. We've seen or I can tell you from my personal experience and then Josh I'll throw it back at you, right?

Josh: Bring it on

Will: But I can tell you from my personal experience what I've seen, because I've seen the technicians, we've been an intracal part of training, right? And so we've done that for the past to almost 10 years, where we've taken technicians and we've introduced those technicians to the public, right? And the expectation, and we've seen those technicians be trained in different ways, and data to us is everything. R and D, research and development, understanding, there are a lot of people out there again who just speak about what they think needs to happen, but the difference between what I've seen with my own eyes and I'm sure Josh can attest to this also is that there is a significant, significant performance difference, what I would call a confidence difference, just an ability to be efficient, difference, efficiency and ability to problem solve.

Josh: Man, it's just, yeah. There are

Will: If you look at

Josh: () And that's

Will: () absolutely.

Josh: I'm glad you went that way because actually I didn't expect you go that direction with that, because you're talking about the self-reflectiveness of the team member.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yes, absolutely.

Josh: And the growth that you see in them.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Which is fantastic.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Because when I was asking the question, I was actually asking the question of, right, like who is the one that gave us the coin our technicians are different, because we weren't the ones that came up with that.

Will: No, no, we didn't.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: That wasn't an in house term.

Will: That's not something.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah, () I'm glad you said that.

Josh: Yeah, yeah, yeah, But I wish you would finish your thought.

Will: I don't want people to think that we're fooling ourselves and we're the ones that are saying our technicians are different.

Josh: That's right.

Will: This is actually something that has been coined by our customers.

Josh: That's right.

Will: Who say very often that, what did they say?

Josh: Every time that we have high level managers from any of the large carriers and insurance companies come in.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: And they tour our facility and they spend time understanding our process.

Will: Yes.

Josh: And that one thing that always comes up is this is different.

Will: This is different.

Josh: You guys are different.

Will: You guys are different.

Josh: I never seen, I don't know if our team can do these things.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right?

Will: That's the most amazing thing, is them actually being so egoless if that's a word, to say that they don't even know that if their technicians can do what our technicians actually do.

Josh: Right.

Will: And that's again guys, that's not us putting our technicians on a pedal store, although I will put my technicians and our technicians up against anyone at any technician in this world, but again that is championed by our customers who come in and see this job being done

Josh: That's right.

Will: And fulfilling that expectation.

Josh: Yeah man, so I think for me it was two degrees, because when I asked the question I was really trying to point you in where the term came from.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Because we didn't coin it.

Will: Yes, we didn't coin it.

Josh: Our customers coined it.

Will: Yeah and I'm glad you came back, so we could do

Josh: But at the same time, right? One of the things that actually gives me the energy to get up every day and do what we do.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Is seeing the growth and development in each one of our individuals.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: On our team members, we're up to just over a hundred right now.

Will: Yes, yes.

Josh: And its amazing man to just see the growth, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: And the empowerment.

Will: Yes.

Josh:  Right? And the ability to understand what they do and how that impacts, right?

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: So

Will: Go ahead.

Josh: Go ahead.

Will: No, you go ahead. Yeah.

Josh: Well, I was going to say where I was take it now is one of the things, so you know being on all sides of this whether it's retail, right? Whether it's what we do day in and day out and like I said I've been more involved in the school side of things, right? And I always hear like any time I talk to the staff in the school side or I've been jumping on calls and I talk to students, existing students or new potential onboarding students.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right? It's interesting to see the perspective of they know they want something, but it's like I can kind of learn this on YouTube, right?

Will: Right, so what is the difference?

Josh: I kind of feel like I want something more, but I know that for me to learn how to repair screens I can learn that on YouTube.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: And man that's a hot button for me, but I want to kind of address that because again #ourtechniciansaredifferent, right? What is that?

Will: Again, it's just

Josh: Right? Aren't we just changing screens, man? Isn't that just a lovely one?

Will: Not at all.

Josh: What is it that makes someone not just a screen swapper?

Will: Right.

Josh: A component swapper.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: And really that’s what it was is isn't this just screen repair, can I learn this, can I just watch some videos on YouTube and learn this, man?

Will: and you can.

Josh: Like this isn't hard.

Will: And you can.  It's kind of like, we use the analogy a lot to changing tires.

Josh: Right.

Will: Right?

Josh: Yeah, yeah, that’s a good point

Will:  So it’s like to me it's like changing tires, it's like if you woke out in the morning one day and your tire's flat.

Josh: Like you did a few episodes back.

Will:  Like you watch our last episode 3, I think it was, right? I had the flat tire. Now, am I a expert, am I a fully educated in tire tread and mileage of tires and the durability of tires and all of these things? Absolutely not.

Josh: Right.

Will: I am not. Can I take a lug off or two, or three or four or five? Take that tire off and jack that car up? And look i even did that in the wrong order.

Josh: Right.

Will: So you know that's my, but again it just shows the point. It's like the importance of education, and is YouTube education? Absolutely. YouTube is education, right? But what I would say is it depends on what you're trying to be and what you're to do and what you want the result.

Josh: And to your point, right? Like and I think that's we do talk about that quite a bit with tire changing, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: Because it's a good analogy.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right? Like if you've ever changed a tire, like you have, like I have.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right? I'm confident in my ability to change tires.

Will: Absolutely. Do you need to go to school to learn how to change tires?

Josh: just to get it back on the road?

Will: No.

Josh: No.

Will: Absolutely, not.

Josh: Once I was showed I did somebody did have to show it to me, I had to learn it somewhere, I had to do it safely.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: I get it, yes. Because you don't want to take the lugs off before you jack it up.

Josh: For sure. Yeah, that could end bad.

Will: That could be very dangerous. I'm sorry, I didn't mean to cut you up, but I had to get that out.

Josh: At the same time that's for me to get on the road, I just got to keep my donut on.

Will: Right.

Josh: So I can get to the experts.

Will: Right, exactly.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: So in the analogy that were using, so what's different between you changing your tire and us changing screens as a profession? What's the difference there?

Will: Well.

Josh: Because that's different, right?

Will: Yeah, it is different.

Josh: It's one thing if I'm changing the screen of my phone, it's another thing if I'm doing hundreds of phones for a lot of customers throughout, right?

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: And to me man like give me a kind of deep. We did this with the cake baking thing a long time ago, right?

Will: Right, right.

Josh: But one thing is once you understand how business are systemized and the power of processes and systems, you understand how you take simple things and you can break them up into several steps, and you can take complicated things and dissect those down into simple steps.

Will: Right, right, exactly.

Josh: That is the process, that is the power of process in systems, right?

Will: That's the power of process. Absolutely.

Josh: So I love the analogy of discount tire, who I love and they're the only ones that do my tires.

Will: Yeah, why is that? So you have to ask why is that, why are they the only ones that do your tires?

Josh: I trust them.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right?

Will: Why do you trust them?

Josh: I trust them because they do a really good job at educating me even to the point where I don't tire shop outside of them.

Will: Right.

Josh: I tire shop internally against different brands.

Will: Exactly. At Discount tires?

Josh: Right?

Will: So they always win.

Josh: So sometimes I'll be like well, okay, well, this tire is 200 bucks, but how much is this tire?

Will: Right.

Josh: Oh that one is 150, oh okay, or whatever it is, right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: But I don't go out and go check Big-O Tire or whoever else might be out there.

Will: Right.

Josh: To see what their price is.

Will: Right.

Josh: Because Discounts don’t get my business, right? And my point saying that is man, when you change a tire and you kind of mentioned this, there's a lot that goes into it, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: When you pop a tire back on, man, there's actually each car has a certain torque that those lug nuts are supposed to be torque back onto to withstand the rigors of what they're going to go through on the road.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: Right?

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: To keep them safe, so they don't fall off if you're going 80 miles an hour down the highway, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: Tread light, air pressure, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: Balance inside the tire, so it wears evenly, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: And it doesn't have more systemic damages against your suspension.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: And your stearing.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: Man, we're talking about a tire with 4 or 5 lug nuts maybe 6.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: Exactly.

Josh: There's a lot that goes into it. tread life, the softness of the rubber, the ware, how much mileage you can get out this, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: The ware bars, all of this sort of stuff. There's a lot that goes into it. Do we need to know all of that? No.

Will: No.

Josh: Do I expect my Discount Tire specialist to know that?

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: Hell yeah.

Will: Does that make the difference?

Josh: Hell yeah, you know why? Because for me and that's a safety issue. For me man, my family is riding this car, I don't want to have some half way tire on my car that I got to worry about me, my wife and my kid being unsafe on  the highway.

Will: Yeah, absolutely.

Josh: Outside of the safety for me, right? My point in saying that is because you're dealing with experts.

Will: Yes.

Josh: And they're experts because they know a lot of stuff that the average person doesn't care about.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right? If I'm just trying to change tires, I don't care about all of those things.

Will: Right.

Josh: A good example is my sister she likes to go to, my sister-in-law she goes to the (), right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Because they got the good deals on the used tires.

Will: Right.

Josh: I don't trust that, I'm not going to put a used tire on my car.

Will: Right.

Josh: You know what I am saying?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Like I don't know, just for me and I'm not downing that in any kind of way, but for me I don't want to do that.

Will: Right.

Josh: So my point in saying it is not necessarily safety issue, but it's the difference in what I expect one professional to know from another.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: When I walk into Discount, I'm going to have an educated conversation, I can ask the right kinds of questions and I expect either the person I'm talking to will have the answers

Will: Right.

Josh: Or he's going to be able to have a resource that has those answers.

Will: And what does that formulate, I mean at the end of the day what does that do for you, that gives you the T word, right? It's the trust word, right?

Josh: Trust, right?

Will: Trust.

Josh: But it comes from a standard, right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: There's a standard of knowledge.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right? Again, for me, I know how to change my tire, but am I confident that with my knowledge that I want to open a tire changing business, I'm going to have to go way deeper into tire knowledge than I ever thought I was going to need because I'm dealing at the public at this point.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: You know what I'm saying?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: And that's why I think this analogy is powerful, because as simple as a tire seems, it is important intrical part of a whole system that the automobile is based on. It's where the car meets its surface it rides on.

Will: All right.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: It's no different than a screen on a phone.

Will: Right.

Josh: That is the interface between the user and what's inside that phone.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: Just like the tire is the interface between the car and the driver and the road.

Will: Yes.

Josh: You know what I'm saying?

Will: Yeah, without the tire you don't roll.

Josh: So, are you going to technicians that actually know the tires they are selling?

Will: Yeah, yeah.

Josh: That's point number one.

Will: That's a great point.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Do they even know what kind of tires, you're telling me this is a Yokohama, but this is Yoyomama.

Will: So from a retail perspective let's get into that. That's an interesting, I think you kind of opened, and you went back to that Pandora’s Box, right?

Josh: It's hard to avoid it.

Will: Because let's talk about retail, right? The first question I would say is how long has higher changes, so to speak or I would LCD or LCD assembly changes, how long as that been available in the market? How long has that been going on, right?

Josh: Quite a while actually, quite a while. And it proliferated and we were part of the problem initially.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: When we first started we didn't know what we were doing.

Will: Right?

Josh: Luckily, well, I don't know, if it was luckily, but when I got into the business actually smartphones weren't as prevalent.

Will: Right.

Josh: So we were doing a lot of flip phones back then.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Flip phones, bar phones, sliders.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Side kicks, razors, all that sort of stuff.

Will: Right.

Josh: But when everything went back to the candy bar style phone and a glass touch screen that's when this business really started to explode and transform into something different.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: And it made the average person decide man, there's opportunity here, right? I can buy a $20 screen, $30 screen and make a hundred bucks in 20 minutes, right?

Will: So let's get a little deeper into that because I love the analogy you made with the tire versus the LCD, right? And asking the question or posing the question, you're selling me this tire but what you really know about this tire?

Josh: What do you know about this tire?

Will: What do you really know about this tire?

Josh: And that is just point number one, right?

Will: That's my point

Josh: That's point number one because that doesn't even have anything to do with the person putting the wheel back on the car.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: That is just the tire mounted on the wheel.

Will: Right.

Josh: Right?

Will: How important is that?

Josh: Obviously that's paramount. It's paramount when it comes to the choice you make with you vehicle.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right?

Will: The choice you make as to where to spend your money?

Josh: That's right.

Will: Right?

Josh: For sure it is. So of course it's the same in this industry.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Now, this is not this episode that I want to talk about this, we're going to get into this later, because that's a supply chain issue.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: But it still does come down, to your point it comes down to knowledge.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Because a lot of people don't know the product they are peddling. They don't, right?

Will: Yeah, yeah.

Josh: They believe they are selling top tier tires, but they are selling cheap retreads.

Will: So they think they are selling Michelin and Firestones, but really they are selling no name brands.

Josh: Who knows man, something that somebody cooked up in somebody's garage.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Literally.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: You know.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: So that's point one.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: But point two is we're really talking about our technicians are different.

Will: Right.

Josh: The technician is the one putting that wheel and tire back on the car.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: So to that point.

Will: Yes.

Josh: There's a lot, at the end of the day everything goes smooth

Will: Yeah.

Josh: No, problems.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right? Took some screws out, connected some connectors, put some screws back in, everybody walks away happy. The issue is when it doesn't go that way.

Will: Right.

Josh: Which happens quite often, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: And that either causes the part supplier, the wholesaler to have to argue with the repair shop

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right? And have to swallow those RMAs, all right, because they're taking things back that are deemed non-functional when really it was an install error, right? Or it’s causing technicians to have to tell customers incomplete truths, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: Because they don't know what they did, and they don't know that they discharged into the phone and maybe now that's why now it's not turning on anymore, or maybe they didn't disconnect, they did a hot swap on the phone that is not hot swappable and now a fuse blew out on the board, but they don't know how to identify that.

Will: And this is kind of the crappy part about it, and that goes a lot to into what I always talking about as confidence or a lack there of, of the technician, right? If the technicians understands what they are doing, right? And they can better identify what the issue maybe, they have a better chance of either fixing it or even communicating honestly to the end consumer.

Josh: That's right.

Will: Which at the end of the day is going to give you better results in terms of your business, so what’s important to know that, and I think what happens is people don't really value that much as they should value that and how important that is. It is just like again we keep, I mean we're going down this tire theme, but Discount Tire is a perfect example of that. Their education, right, their education and your understanding of how informed they are about the quality of the product they serve is what makes them what they are.

Josh: Right.

Will: And that is just as important in the cellphone repair business.

Josh: Yeah.

Will: Right? Your education on a quality of the product you sell to your customer based on the expectation and the result of your customer has is just as important.

Josh: Do you think that the guy, you've been to Discount, you've been into Discount recently.

Will: Yes.

Josh: We've known that, right?

Will: Which is why we're using Discount for whatever right

Josh: Yeah, yeah, because it's fresh on the brain.

Will: Yeah, it's fresh on the brain, exactly.

Josh: But thinking about man, and do you think that everybody that was on the floor installing tires also interfaces with customer across the register?

Will: No.

Josh: Now, do you think that the person across from the register has a better knowledge of the tires they are selling?

Will: Yes.

Josh: Okay, can I leave now? Are we done tonight?

Will: And why is that?

Josh: Right.

Will: Why is that?

Josh: I know I am being silly I know

Will: Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know what you mean, for sure.

Josh: But it's the truth, right?

Will: Absolutely. 100%

Josh: You better believe that they are able to have a better conversation about the difference between a Parelli P1 and a Yokahoma tire versus a sport cup, right?

Will: Yeah, for sure, 100%

Josh: All these different tires, they can explain the difference.

Will: Yes, and why is that important? The why, why is that important?

Josh: I don't know.

Will: What does that for business?

Josh: I don't know. I thought it was just taking some lug nuts off and putting some lug nuts back on.

Will: Well, if you listen to some people in this industry that's kind of what they'll tell you it is, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: And the question is whether you want to believe that or not and again what we're doing guys is we're being a little facetious, but we're giving you

Josh: Yeah, we're having a little fun.

Will: Yeah, we're having a little fun, right? But at the same time we're kind of telling the truth like there are some people out tell who would tell you there is no different, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: And that not understanding or not understanding that difference is not going to impact you in any kind of way.

Josh: Right.

Will: When we know and again what we've seen with our experience because we've done it at every level guys, we started at the retail level, we moved into education where we teach technician on every level, so that's the retail, that's the guy who wants to do it mobile solo, or the solo, what we call solo entrepreneur.

Josh: Solopreneur

Will: Solopreneur and also what the level of what we call a tier 1 or a platform where we have to come in and teach 50 to 100 or even 200 plus technicians. We've seen it done and we understand the importance and the differentiation of the education, and understanding that if you understand the why, what you're doing, how to do it at all levels it's going to make for a different level of technician.

Josh: Better technician.

Will: Better technician

Josh: Because you have a better understanding of fundamentals.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: So what I would say is, is school necessary, right? Is formal certification, not even school.

Will:  Yes.

Josh: But formal certification is it necessary for screen replacement?

Will: Yes.

Josh: It depends on how you want to operate.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right? Like, you know Joe Public who's starting his own business out of his bedroom. Yeah, maybe not, he’d probably get away with some YouTube videos for a while.

Will: But for a while, only until when, right?

Josh: Until he runs into the problem of man, I got a few customers’ phones that didn't turn back on.

Will: Right.

Josh: And I don't really know how to explain that, right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: So you're going to take one or two paths, you either going to admit that you made a mistake being ethically, or you're going to swallow that and say well, your phone was beyond economical repair, which is the dirty way of going about it, right?

Will: Yes.

Josh: And pushing it back on the customer to figure out a different option, because you don't know what you did, right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: But inevitably we always go there.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: No matter what path you take you end up going down that road.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Especially once you get your first batch of bad parts.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Which always happens, right? Because of the way this industry is right now.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: You run into your first batch of bad parts, then you're going to understand the power of customer service, and you're going to start to really question your knowledge in the business especially if it's not just you doing the repairs and you have a team.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: You got to start really, when you get and I remember this.

Will: I see you're feeling the past ().

Josh: Well, because I remember this I took it back right in my own mind because I remember standing in the shop talking to the technicians, asking them what's really going on.

Will: Yeah.

Josh: Because we had a big blip in the radar () and there's a lot of return merchandise.

Will: A lot of return of merchandise.

Josh: A lot of returns are coming back because there's a problem and it was the same problem across the board, right?

Will: Right.

Josh: But it became defensive where it was like me versus the technicians in the stores.

Will: Yeah, yes.

Josh: Which was unnecessary.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right and it was because at the time we didn't have a good enough understanding of the part problems.

Will: Yes.

Josh: Right? And even back then to take it back to 2009, 2010, even the technical installation problems.

Will: Right.

Josh: Because I didn't, I knew what I had done when I first started itt.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: But my technicians didn't know all the intricacies and the problems that can go wrong.

Will: Right.

Josh: There are little things that can happen that can cause a very simple thing to go array.

Will: Yes.

Josh: It can go very badly very quickly, and if you don't have the knowledge to figure out what's wrong, man, what are you going to do?

Will: And that's the difference a lot of times between failure and success.

Josh: Yeah.

Will: Of your entire business.

Josh: That's right.

Will: Not just that sale, not just that technical experience or that scenario or that experience with that customer, but your business as a whole because what I want you guys to understand is how that impacts you, right? How that, what do you call it, it's, what's the word when it's on top and how it stacks like that one problem turns to this bigger problem that turns into this bigger problem.

Josh: It's the domino effect.

Will: Yeah, it's the domino effect, right? And that's kind of what you see, because they can start with just a misunderstanding, miscommunication, or not understanding, miscommunication, turns into a bad review, it turns into other people reading those reviews, other people not patronizing your store, so it just turns it. You got to understand, and that's what I try to get people to understand a lot of times is, just a little bit of lack of information, what you think is insignificant in terms of what you need to know versus what you don't need to know can a lot of times turn into the difference between success and failure of an entire business, because of how it's stack.

Josh: Right.

Will: When it multiplies, when it’s done consistently the same way every time.

Josh: That's right.

Will: So, imagine having that experience two or three times a day, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: Yeah, you got 25 repairs a day, but every day you have this experience 2 or 3 times a day and that's starts to

Josh: It's compound.

Will: Yeah, it's start to compound. That's the word I'm looking for, it's start to compound into these bad reviews, right?

Josh: Right.

Will: Because a lot of times bad reviews are just misunderstandings or miss education or miscommunication.

Josh: Right.

Will: And that comes from lack of knowledge most of the time.

Josh: Right.

Will: Most of the time what we've seen in this industry is that if you understand where the problem arrive from, how it was created, right? Regardless of whether you did or it was done already, the customer did it or that was or the technician did it, regardless of how it was done, if you understand the reasoning for why the result is what it is, you're going to be more confident and you're going to be able to communicate the solution or what the problem is a lot clearer and a lot better which at the end of the day what we've seen is almost a 100% of the time if not a little bit less, customers are okay with that.

Josh: Yeah.

Will: They just want to be not taken advantage of and again if you are confident then you're not going to have a lot of problems with a lot of the issues you may have if you don't know what you are doing. You understand what I'm saying?

Josh: It's communication man.

Will: It's communication.

Josh: It's communication and confidence and your ability to communicate.

Will: Exactly.

Josh: And being able to admit, you know what this is beyond my skill level.

Will: But you have to know.

Josh: Right.

Will: At the end of it. The point we are trying to drive home is you have to know. And if you are just in the business of swapping out screens and you don't understand the fundamentals.

Josh: Right.

Will: The skills, right? That put you in the higher or what we call

Josh: Echelon

Will: Echelon, right. Class, standard then you're going to quickly run into these issues that are going to be a problem for your business.

Josh: Yeah, especially in today’s price chopping environment.

Will: For sure.

Josh: Right, if you are competing against guys that are doing $22 screen repairs.

Will: Right.

Josh:  Right? You are buying a part for 20 bucks, and you are doing the repair for 22 bucks you better figure out a way to differentiate yourself real quick.

Will: Exactly. So with that being said we're at that 40 minute mark Josh.

Josh: Yeah? man, did we get our point across, I don't know?

Will: I don't know, but you know what, there is a lot more to come.

Josh: Yeah.

Will: So, if we didn’t.

Josh: What's a continuing conversation.

Will: And what great is this is what we're going to start doing guys is we are going to start answering questions. So we are going to start taking questions.

Josh: Right.

Will: And so I know we've been giving, it has been a lot of one way communication right now. But we want to really do is we know some viral conversation is probably sparking a lot of questions for you guys as we go.

Josh: That's right.

Will: So what we want to do is we want to make sure that you guys are getting involved in this dialogue, and this communication that we have, and giving back to us, asking a question as we go so we can answer those questions for you.

Josh: Right.

Will: So I think.

Josh: To help you on your path to growth man. That's the whole point of Ask WillandJosh.

Will: For sure.

Josh: Right.

Will: Absolutely.

Josh: Is to get on this path of growth and to realize, right, when we say #ourtechniciansaredifferent.

Will: Right.

Josh: We mean you too.

Will: Absolutely, absolutely and we want you guys to be different, we want you guys to be the best technicians you can be, to represent this industry in a way it needs to be represented, because at the end of the day the consumer or the customer and their expectation is what's most important. And so we always advocate for that, giving the experience to the customer the best experience that they can actually have, and by doing that you have to be educated on what you need in terms of resources.

Josh: That's right.

Will: To do that.

Josh: And that's where the profit hides.

Will: That's where the profit hides man.

Josh: Right? The profit hides where the customers are.

Will: Not to run Discount Tires into the ground, but they do an excellent job of doing that, and the reason we used that example is because most tires are universal need for everybody.

Josh: Man, you're talking about a commodity.

Will: Yeah, that's one thing. Everybody understands when we use that analogy.

Josh: Right.

Will: And which is why we used it so much because it makes so much sense and everybody can understand it in the way that we use the example, so I think it has been good.

Josh: Yeah, I enjoyed it again.

Will: I enjoyed it always, always man and I know we always feel like and even

Josh: Yeah, because we got so much to talk about man, we could talk for hours, right?

Will: Yeah.

Josh: And get onto the next topic.

Will: And we always feel incomplete like for 40 minutes we always feel incomplete. But what we know is you got to do these in bits and we got to feed in bits.

Josh: At the end of the day man, my whole goal is after every episode I just hope that we leave you better than we found you.

Will: Absolutely. And we hope that we spur questions, right? The idea is to help you guys have more questions so we can get your questions answered, so we can have more dialogue, we can have more conversation, so we want to spark those questions, things that we don't even think of a lot of times, we want to make sure that you guys are getting those questions answered. So we want to be available to you to answer those questions, so.

Josh: Yeah, I enjoyed it.

Will: I enjoyed it.

Josh: I enjoyed it man, until next time. We'll see you guys soon.

Will: You guys can get in contact with us, if you want to ask questions really quick you can go to Ask WillandJosh, or you can Google Ask WillandJosh, all the platforms are covered. We have Instagram, Facebook, (), Tweeter ().

Josh: Make sure you like, tweet, subscribe and follow.

Will: Exactly, exactly. #AskWillandJosh. Until next time Josh.

Josh: Until next time, we're signing off man.

Will:  We're signing off, we'll see you guys next time.

About the Author Joshua Gray

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