Sunday, June 28, 2009

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.