In Part One of this article, Matt Michel described the first 30 attributes that help set top HVAC contractors apart from their competition. In this second and final part, he provides the final 28 charactersistics. While all 58 apply to very few companies, the vast majority apply to nearly all of the top performing residential retail HVAC contractors.

Without further delay, top contractors do the following:

31. Partner With Suppliers

Top contractors seek ways to partner with their suppliers, looking to the suppliers to help them with inventory, training, and technical support.

32. Focus

Top contractors focus. They focus technically, knowing what they can and should do, ignoring what they cannot and should not do. They don't chase money into a different part of the industry simply because they can. They focus on their area of expertise. Similarly, top contractors exhibit a geographic focus. They define their service area and focus their effort within it.

Matt Michel, CEO, The Service Roundtable33. Use Outside Professionals

Top contractors don't try to do it themselves when there is an outside professional who can perform better and save them money in the long run. This means top contractors build relationships with attorneys, accountants, web designers, SEO/SEM specialists, and marketing companies. They turn to these specialists for their expertise, just like these specialists turn to them for heating and air conditioning work.

34. Stress Service Agreements

Top contractors know that the most valuable customers are service agreement customers, who are more loyal, do business more frequently, and are replacement sales waiting to happen. Thus, top contractors emphasize their service agreement program across their company, continually reinforcing the value of the service agreement to the company and the bargain the service agreement represents for the customer.

35. Network in the Community

Top contractors are centers of influence in their communities. They get involved in the community, joining civic clubs, leads clubs, and the chamber of commerce. They are active in their churches and other volunteer organizations, serving on community boards. Top contractors are connected.

36. Network in the Industry

Top contractors also network within the industry. They get involved with national contractor organizations and attend conferences and shows. They seek to build relationships with the best contractors and consultants in the industry.

37. Adopt and Adapt

Top contractors are not shy about adopting the best practices of other contractors. They don't assume that their market and companies are unique and different from other markets and companies. When they identify better approaches, they adopt them and adapt them to fit their companies and markets.