Editor’s note: This letter is in response to Butch Welsch’s column “Learning From Sting Operation,” Aug. 13.

Shine a Light, Don’t Cast a Shadow, on the Industry

I enjoyed Butch Welsch’s article on the sting, but one has to wonder what the gain is for any contractor to help the media point a finger at others in our industry. This seems to be the way a lot of nonprofessionals in our industry cry about their poor success.

We all know the adage “What bleeds reads!” This challenge has only been acerbated by the fact of extreme competition (due to too many pointless news shows) amongst the current media.

Our company has been approached twice in the past 1½ years to be an expert for a sting show. Both wanted to do a show to see how much [contractors would charge] for a preplanned defect in the system (similar to what NBC did). I met with both news directors and had them change their stories to something much more productive. One was what a homeowner can do before calling, one was about the need for preventive maintenance.

Any business owner who lives in the U.S.A. knows that there is no such thing as a fair sting news story. To hide behind the mantel of “they were going to do it anyway” or “I was just trying to help” is either a display of naivety or stupidity.

Anytime one assists the media to cast a shadow on our industry not only adds to yellow journalism, but throws dirt on everyone who works so hard to do the right thing.

Butch, you always have great articles, and we are using the video in a field team meeting.

Wesley Holm
Thompson Plumbing, Heating & Cooling

Publication date: 8/27/2012