You’ve heard the story of the ‘carpenter’ hired to fix a floor squeak. He walks over the floor, hears the squeak, and puts down a nail, and the squeak is gone. It took just a few minutes to solve the problem. He invoiced his client $101. The client went off the rails and asked why it was so much for five minutes of work. The carpenter replied, “It is $1 for the nail and $100 to know where to put it.” The client was still unhappy to pay the bill or pay for the carpenter’s training and experience.
It is a perfect story to help us understand the value of our experience and training and how we must earn a return on our training investment. When we repair a problem quickly because of our knowledge and expertise and because of our immense learning, we should not be afraid to charge. Doctor do.
Are we charging properly for our knowledge, or are we missing the hours and failures we invested in getting our breadth of expertise? We can recover the training costs from past failures that took so long to get, right? We learned from our failures and need to charge appropriately.
Experience, training, and intuition are crucial in identifying the underlying causes of floor squeaks. A seasoned professional understands that each situation may require unique solutions due to variations in flooring materials, subflooring conditions, or structural issues. A carpenter can rely on their expertise to make informed decisions vs. AI or the quick YouTube video fix. Do you see the parallel to our industry?
Recently, Matt Fanslow’s episode 96 titled, ‘Unintended Consequences: The Impact of Over-Reliance on Databases and AI,’ helped sum up this floor squeak story. LISTEN HERE. He also shared his concerns about relying too heavily on databases and artificial intelligence in automotive diagnostics and the potential long-term repercussions of this reliance on critical thinking skills and reasoning. (Read that last line again.)
Additionally, cost considerations come into play when deciding between assistance or relying on your experienced professional. While using an AI or quick-fix tool may seem more cost-effective initially, weighing the potential risks of incomplete repairs or further damage from relying on other sources is essential.
I understand the two sides of this discussion. Still, I ask you to weigh these thoughts as technology and the training necessary to keep up can differentiate your shop of highly qualified diagnosticians who know how to ‘nail’ down the problems they get every day.