6 Easy Commitments That Will Grow Your Business in 2020
Well, the new decade and new year are upon us – 2020. A year that, for many of us once seemed so very far away, is here. Some of us have survived a lot over the years from Clackers to sandlot baseball to mullets … and here we are! Congratulations if you’re part of that group of survivors!
As we all look at our business in 2020, we have an opportunity in front of us to start the new decade off with some solid commitments that will grow our businesses and prepare them for ongoing success. Maybe you have a business that has been growing and thriving for many years or maybe you have been more just “getting along” … it doesn’t make any difference – there are always things we can do to ensure the best possible future. As my father used to tell me: “If you think you’re holding your own in business, fuhgeddaboutit! You’re actually going backward because someone is going to be smart and nimble and committed enough to go around you while you’re just treading water!” I have carried that advice with me for about 40 years now (probably back to when I had a mullet).
So, to help you start off the new decade in great fashion, we are pleased to provide home improvement contractors with the following “6 Easy Commitments That Will grow Your Business in 2020!”
REDUCE LEAD COSTS
1. Commit to telling one random person each day about yourself and your business. It can be someone at the grocery store, the gas station, or someone on LinkedIn, but take the time to meet someone, find out about them, and then tell them a bit about yourself. I believe the world changes when we build relationships. If you tell one person each day about yourself and your business, I feel certain that either from those 365 people or people they then tell about you, you will pick up at least 6 projects across the year you would not have otherwise had. If it helps, put 365 business cards in a box and, each day, use one to give or send to someone … and see what happens! At the very least, your life will be richer through the new people you get to know. Give this challenge to your team members, too!
GAIN GREATER CONTROL OVER YOUR BUSINESS
2. Commit to monthly financial statements. What I find is that many contractors tell me they have financial statements but what they really do is collect bits of paper and spreadsheets all year, give it all to their CPA at the end of the year in a big box and on a thumb drive, and ask them to create a year-end financial statement and file their taxes. This practice completely eliminates the value of knowledge that can be obtained through solid, reliable, monthly reports. Commit to a part-time bookkeeper who can get you a financial report for the previous month by the 10th of each month – you will be able to track trends, expenses, and profits in your business like never before!
BUILD INTO YOUR TEAM
3. Commit to training your team members. No team gets better without learning more about their work and the world. Decide now what sorts of training your team members need to help your business. It may be college classes, training with manufacturers, or a “train the trainer” program within your own company which then brings knowledge and new ideas back to the entire team. Whatever it is, commit to learning and growing in 2020. The new decade brings new opportunities, new technologies, and new challenges. Commit to preparing your company!
INCREASE YOUR SALES TEAM’S CLOSING PERCENTAGE
4. Commit to weekly sales meetings. Here’s an observation I have had of many home improvement contractors over the years: They complain about their sales team members. A lot. They complain about lack of motivation, lack of proper behavior in the sales process, and poor closing ratios. Yet, when I ask them how often they build into their sales people, I hear something like “Well, when they started, they rode with my best guy and I touch base with them every once awhile. My sales manager (who probably is also doing in home sales) is supposed to be keeping up with them … but he doesn’t seem to do his job either!” Here’s my advice, if sales is the lifeblood of your company, you personally need to spend some time with your team – in good ways. Weekly sales meetings discussing what they have run into in the home, doing role playing, and quizzing them on parts of your scripted presentation (You do have one of those, right? If not, let’s talk!) will make a huge difference in their performance through increased accountability, knowledge, and enthusiasm.
COUNTERACT A TROUBLING TREND
5. Commit to addressing the skilled labor shortage for your company. Go out and establish a relationship with a local vocational school or tech college that regularly trains students for jobs similar to those offered by your company. Get to know the instructors and volunteer your time to visit with students at least 3 – 4 times per school year. Hand out small logo items and your business cards. Give students a glimpse of what it would look like to work for your company. Tell your story and make it clear why they’d enjoy and benefit from working for you. Offer a paid internship opportunity. Offer free job shadowing. Use this as an opportunity to create a “pipeline” of 3 – 4 new team members each year.
WALK AWAY FROM THE WEEDS
6. Commit to spending time working “on” your business, not always “in” it. Most home improvement contractors started their careers in “the field”. And there’s a lot to be said for that! But it also puts them at a huge risk of not giving enough time to developing and implementing the strategy and processes of their businesses. Instead, they always find themselves in the thick of things – putting out fires, “doing it, doing it, doing it.” Starting in 2020, commit to spending five hours each week developing strategy and processes for your business and spending time learning from and coaching your team members.
Keep me posted as you implement the above things to grow your business. Struggling with how to do it? Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call me at 1-800-543-8938 ext 201. I’d love to talk about your business!
Todd Miller has spent his entire career in the metal building products manufacturing industry. He is president of Isaiah Industries, an organization recognized as one of the world’s leading metal roofing manufacturers. Todd is currently Vice President of the MRA (Metal Roofing Association) and a Past Chair of MCA (Metal Construction Association). Through his website, he strives to raise the bar on standards and practices to provide property owners with the best possible products for successful roofing projects.
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