When Brian Duttenhoffer and Matt Tomko got tired of working for a company that didn’t treat them or their customers right, they joined forces to create Summit Home Remodeling. And in two short years, they’re already a $3 million-plus going concern.
The two credit much of that success to their kinder-is-better business philosophy. “The way we treat our staff, that’s going to trickle down to the customer,” says Duttenhoffer, co-owner and chief financial officer. “People just want to be heard.”
But there’s more going on at Summit Home than a touchy-feely approach to business. “Construction has always been old-school calluses and hard handshakes,” says Tomko, co-owner and chief executive officer. “We decided to turn that on its ear and move with the times.”
That means taking a new look at old-school tactics such as canvassing. Duttenhoffer and Tomko have streamlined the process using a Google-created system that tells canvassers all the pertinent information available about a potential client. If the prospect looks promising, that information is immediately sent to the call center for follow-up. “We know exactly what we have to do quicker than we would have before,” Tomko says.
The duo takes a similar tactical approach to training, requiring a two-week boot camp in which employees learn a very scripted approach to sales. “It’s almost a weed-out process,” Duttenhoffer says. “They’re really going to have to want it to stay here.”
But all that tech and training are really just a means to an end of having a better work/life balance. The two have even brought in Duttenhoffer’s mom to run the call center.“You get to see every week why you’re really doing this,” Duttenhoffer says. “And that constantly re-inspires us to be better.”