Rebuilding Your Construction Business On Purpose in 2013
Most remodeling and construction business owners didn’t start with a plan for where their business would end up; they just ended up where their businesses took them. As they did business the employees and subs who worked for them, the clients who bought from them and the project types they bought are often the factors that eventually defined the business and therefore defined who their target customer type and job types are today. If you’re not happy with where your business ended up, and you had to downsize during the recession, your current position might just provide an opportunity to rethink how you move forward before the economy and your business picks up. Here’s a path to consider if you want a different business going forward. Reflect back on and take advantage of lessons learned in the past as you map out your plan.
First establish goals for your business.
Make sure the goals support both your professional and personal ambitions. If you want to work to live, rather than live to work, now is your opportunity to make the change happen.
Your goals must be measurable
Next, establish metrics by which you will measure whether your business is on the right track and is achieving those goals. In your metrics include ways to measure things like financial health, quality of service, quality of work, company culture, when you will be ready for the next stage of growth and the related employee growth or advancement that needs to be achieved.
Decide who you will need for employees
Now that you have a clear idea of your goals and have defined objective ways to measure whether you’re achieving them or not, you can develop organizational charts for each stage of growth as well as job descriptions and candidate profiles for the people you will need to hire and advance. Rather than let who you hire define your business and the job descriptions for those people, you will this time be able to proactively define, seek out and better qualify the right employees for each job position you will need to fill as the business grows.
Here are a few examples.
If you want to use a lead carpenter system, hire field staff with both trade and management skills. If you can’t find real lead carpenters with management skills (because in reality very few exist) find good carpenters with the cognitive abilities and desire to learn and use those skills. Then, train them yourself or find someone else to properly train them. Your lead carpenter job description will help define the training you will need to provide. If you want managers who will lead employees rather than supervise them, make sure you include that consideration in the employee profiles you will use to complement your job descriptions and hiring decisions.
Putting the pieces together
If you hire the wrong managers you will be compromising your ability to hire and keep the right employees to do the work. If you have to compromise on who you hire to do the work they will not be able to live up to your metrics or you will have to lower the standards by which you measure their performance. If you drop the bar on your metrics you will either have to accept that you will never achieve your business and personal goals, or you will have to drop the bar on those too.
One definition of insanity is to keep doing the same things but expect different results. If you want 2013 to be the year you changed the direction and performance of your business, you would probably be insane not to consider the path described above.
Thinking about figuring all this out on your own?
If you and your business have the ability, the time and the money to learn all this stuff on your own check out this list of Five Great Books for Remodeling Business Owners.
Rather work one-on-one with a coach to help you?
Contact Shawn to find out how he helps remodelers and other construction related businesses all over the country achieve the business and personal results they desire. If you're not earning and keeping enough money for your retirement yet he can help you change things.