As I sit down to write my annual list of resolutions for contractors, I am amazed at how much things changed in 2020. Construction was going well and then, in March 2020, COVID-19 hit. At first, we thought it was going to be a disaster for the construction industry. States, cities and towns shut down projects and many applied for PPP loans. Then, something amazing happened. Construction was considered an essential service and everyone was back to work.  That said, the work world changed: companies were donating their PPE to frontline workers, COVID-19 protocols had to be followed and paperwork had to be filed. Everyone was scrambling to figure out how to comply and keep their businesses going. So, you may or may not ask, what was I, as a construction lawyer doing? I spent March and April thinking about the new risks contractors/construction companies were facing and developing contract clauses to protect the industry. I wrote a number of blog posts with clauses to add to your contra

Timeless Advice for Remodelers

A nice post by Leah Thayer on timeless truths for remodelers:

It includes the following advice:

company owners, that what really matters is that you do the following, year in and year out:

  • Screen your potential employees, potential clients, and potential business partners.
  • Pay attention to red flags the moment they begin flying, and act swiftly.
  • (Hire slowly and fire quickly, in other words.)
  • Hire people who complement you, rather than resemble you; who have skills and opinions you don’t have; who seem comfortable challenging you, on occasion.
  • Give them the information they need to do their jobs, and the tools and training they need to get the information and skills they don’t have.
  • Know your numbers, and not just your account balance.
  • Write down your systems -- how your company does things -- and make sure the right people see the right ones (e.g., clients know how change orders work; salespeople know what to pass on to field crews and vice versa).
  • Take an interest in every person on your staff, and actively solicit their ideas. Attend their meetings, and sometimes just listen.
  • Share the rewards of your company’s success, distribute the pain fairly, and communicate about why you're making the decisions you're making.
  • Be active in your community. Talk to other remodelers. Join trade associations and peer review groups.
  • Plant seeds for the long term and don’t despair if the results come slowly.
  • Believe in what you do; do what you believe in.

Not to oversimplify, but the general consensus is that as long as you have these pieces in place, your business will probably be fine in the long run – even if you had a really bad day or week.

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