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Your Plumbers Should Focus on Value, Not Selling Pressure – Episode 327

How can you make more money without subjecting your plumbers to sales pressure? In this insightful episode of Potty Talk LIVE The Million Dollar Plumber and The Lovely Laura discuss why plumbers don’t sell and how to incentivize them and make more money.


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3 Golden Nuggets

  1. They think it’s about money. When your business is set up with sales goals in mind, your plumbers think it’s all about making you more money. You need to focus on the service and the value.
  2. They don’t benefit. When you pay your techs hourly, what’s their benefit to spend time with the client, making sure everything is done right, and possibly selling more (by giving options)? They need to be incentivized to earn part of the pie.
  3. They’re not salesmen. Trying to train your plumbers is a fruitless mission. They don’t like to sell, they don’t want to sell, and your customers don’t want a half-hearted sales pitch. Take away the pressure and give them communication training.


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Show Notes

Focus on the Service, Not the Money

[09:49] When you measure and judge your plumbers on dollars or sales goals, their focus will obviously become money. The mindset that they’ll have whenever you talk to them about ticket price or how much they’re selling will be that you just want them to work hard and make them more money. That is not a motivating thing for anybody.

Your techs need to focus on the value of the service they’re providing rather than a ticket price. Pro tip: you aren’t selling plumbing. You’re really selling time. It’s time to focus on that and the value of that rather than the cost of goods. 

They don’t want to sell when they are focused on the money, because what’s the benefit?

Incentivize Them

[15:05] Especially when you’re paying your plumbers hourly, they don’t benefit at all, so why try and sell? If they get paid the same to drive to the house or to spend time doing a thorough job and upselling, what is the incentive to offer choices and raise that ticket price?

This is why incentive-based pay is so important. There are a few different options, like commissions, but we push for the piece rate pay structures. Piece rate is more straight-forward than other options, and more importantly focuses on time rather than the dollar. 

This structure also helps avoid the “I don’t like doing that kind of job” and incentivizes them to stick with the job and take the extra hours, and perhaps reach the next pay scale.

They’re Not Salesmen – Remove the Sales Pressure

[24:22] How many times have you heard the words “I don’t want to be a salesman” or “I don’t want to be salesy” from prospective plumbers? They are coming from these bigger companies, companies who focus all of their energy on sales goals, and it’s just not for them. 

Selling works, but that’s not what we’re about at the Million Dollar Plumber. The guys who become plumbers are not natural salesmen, and it’s a waste of everyone’s time and energy to try and make them one. What we should spend our time on is communication training. 

As we’ve covered before, the best way to organically raise average ticket price is to offer three options; good, better, best. We’ve also reminded you that your customers are looking for a reason to say no – they didn’t want to call a plumber in the first place, so they definitely don’t want to spend any extra money. 

This is where having a trainer come in and teach the value of listening, communication, and offering options will help your plumbers excel. We know you’re already telling them, but sometimes having that third party voice come in and reinforce it helps to validate what you’re saying and give it a little more punch.

In conclusion, stop trying to get your guys to sell. Instead, shift their focus to the service, show them the benefit of doing the jobs, and stress the importance of communication.

Richard’s Call to action.

[20:49] If you want to learn more about what we’ve discussed and become a successful plumbing business owner, check out the Million Dollar Plumber Blueprint. It lays out the specs to build a successful, self-sustaining, and very profitable plumbing business. That you can make a lot of money with. It’s all in there for you and it’s free. So if you type free in the comments or go to and get your free blueprint.

[36:16] you can truly grow your plumbing business and have the freedom lifestyle and live the life that you really wanna live. We cover all that in my Million Dollar Plumber Success Academy in 12 bite size modules, laid out in an easily digestible format. Go to and grab your free trial. It’s all there for you.