Efficient vs. Effective: What I’ve Learned From My Roofer

Time is money. This is a saying that every person has heard from the time they were old enough to work and the 21st century has taken that to a new level.time-is-not-money You can sign documents from your phone while on vacation in another country. You can speak face to face with clients from your office without being there. Heck, you can even send all the information you want instantly via email to anyone in the world if you have their address. But, what if I told you that this might not be the best thing for your business, that spending a little more time with your clients may be the key to more business, that being the most efficient isn’t always the most effective approach.  

In the twenty plus  years I have worked with O.R. Construction quite a bit has changed, cell phones, internet, social media to name a few things, but, doing business with Orie hasn’t changed at all. In fact, he’s made a point to keep it the same. He has a website, but will not bid jobs if you just email him the plans, that’s not his style. Orie does business a little more old school. He personally visits your home or job site, then discusses your needs in detail. He asks questions and gets to know you all while throwingin a few stories which could give most stand up comics a run for their money. Before he leaves, he gives you handwritten bid on a O.R. Construction carbonless form which details the scope of work to be performed. One copy for you, one copy for him.

When he gets the job he brings a small crew of three, maybe four roofers and himself, personally working and supervising every installation. When the project is finished he hand delivers the invoice, thanks you for giving him  the work and ask if everything was done to your satisfaction.

In  today’s high tech world this may seem very inefficient, why not just email the bill? Save some time and travel, quick and easy! His process may seem old fashioned, outdated and inefficient but it is highly effective. Orie tells me he rarely gives a bid he doesn’t get even if he isn’t the lowest bidder. You may be asking why? It’s fairly simple, Orie makes people feel special, cared about, and listened to. During the Great Recession Orie didn’t miss a beat while other companies where shutting their doors it was business as usual at O.R. Construction. Years later, low and behold, he’s still trucking. In fact, he’s booked out for the summer and I was lucky enough to get on his schedule.

So what have I learned from my roofer?  Two things, first, there is a big difference between efficiency and effectiveness when dealing customers. What may be efficient may not be the most effective.The second is hard to quantify, with all the fuss about your social media presence the question that runs through my mind is, how is your human relationship presences.You can have a business without human relationship, Amazon has proved that and you can have a business without a social media presence Orie has proved that. What are your thoughts? If your business involves people, you are in the relationship business. Is there a more effective way to have a relationship than face to face? Or are you content with a like on a Facebook and a signature on Docusign?