Dec 02

E600: Have Some Patience

The key to patience is acceptance and faith.

 

  1. It's human nature - we want instant gratification
    1. We want it now
    2. We quit too early
    3. We expect too much, too soon
  2. Have patience with people - accept them for who they are
    1. Everyone is different
    2. Don't project yourself on them
    3. Give them due time
  3. Have patience with the outcome - have faith in your actions
    1. Avoid the need for instant results
    2. Learn to trust our efforts
    3. The rewards will come
      1. Plant the seed, tend the garden, and reap the fruits

Dec 01

E599: Tis The Season

Take advantage of the Holiday season to do something unique.

 

  1. It's that time of year
    1. Holiday season
    2. Office parties / events
    3. Celebrations
    4. Time off
  2. Be part of the season
    1. Get some spirit around the office
    2. Take some time to be grateful for those around you
    3. Build some relationships
      1. As you visit with people avoid the shop talk
    4. Do something with your team
      1. We used to have a toy drive for Toys-4-Tots on the job site
  3. Do something unique
    1. Spend time one on one with your team members/employees and thank them for something they did they year
    2. Send personal, handwritten Holiday greetings cards to 10 or 20 key people associated with your company

Nov 29

E598: Managing Project Invoicing

Go the extra mile to keep your payments flowing timely.

 

  1. Getting paid is a priority
    1. Manage the process
    2. Meet the deadlines
    3. Include all necessary information
    4. Stay on top of it all with good practices
  2. Your first invoice
    1. Review your contract for all requirements related to payments
    2. Create your first invoice early
    3. Schedule a meeting with your client to review
    4. Create a checklist for future invoices
    5. Follow up on the approval and payment process
  3. Subsequent invoices
    1. Submit timely
    2. Include the proper information - make sure you review with the checklist
    3. Follow up with your client about receipt and approvals
    4. Follow up on expected payment

Nov 29

E597: Social Media Profiles

Now that your website is tuned up, let's look at social media.

 

  1. Social media platforms are becoming go-to resources for buyers
    1. LinkedIn - B2B
    2. Facebook - B2C
    3. Others
  2. Social media are platforms that allow people to connect with your company
    1. People use these platforms for research
    2. There are two sides to consider
      1. People researching construction related things
      2. People researching you specifically - this is what we are talking about today
    3. People want to learn more about you and find a possible connection
      1. That friend that may have hired you in the past
      2. That employee that knows one of their friends
  3. We need to have a social media presence
    1. At a minimum:
      1. LinkedIn
      2. Facebook
    2. Create your company pages
      1. Keep your information accurate
    3. Have your employees all link to the pages as well

Nov 28

E596: Ask Coach – Handling Vendor Agreements

Getting vendors to agree to our terms can take a little persuasion.

 

Q: I recently updated my subcontract and purchase order agreements and I am having trouble getting some of my vendors to agree to the new terms. Should I work with these vendors with a simplified agreement?

A: You should work with all vendors using the same basic agreements. Start with a basic agreement with the important information then persuade your vendors to agree to it. If you cannot get them to agree, then you should seek other vendors.

 

  1. Subcontracts / Purchase Orders serve a purpose
    1. They outline who does what
    2. They guide us when there are issues
    3. They tell us how we will work together
    4. We all need one
  2. A good agreement serves all parties
    1. Create a simple agreement that covers the legal basics and add the other key elements
    2. Put your focus into the scope, schedule, and corrective action sections
    3. Don't work with anyone without an executed agreement
  3. Some vendors may need some guidance
    1. Let them know it's designed to protect both parties
    2. The agreement tells the details when someone else may no longer be involved
    3. If they cannot comply then you will seek other vendors

Nov 25

E595: Getting Back At It

Ready, Set, Get Back At It!

 

We often have times when we are off from work and it's always a struggle to get started again when our time off has ended. It's hard getting back on the horse and getting going. Here is some help.

 

  1. Prepare upfront - before you are going to be away from the office
    1. Write a To Do list for your first day back
    2. Clean off you desk
    3. Leave some open time on your schedule
  2. Getting back on the horse
    1. If you prepared, jump right into your tasks
    2. If not
      1. Clean off your desk
      2. Create a list of "quick hit" items to complete first
      3. Let your email wait
      4. Focus on taking action - one item at a time

Nov 24

E594: Being Thankful

Happy Thanksgiving and Thank You for being here.

 

We don't need to wait for a special day to practice an Attitude of Gratitude

 

  1. Reflect regularly
    1. Look back at your day, week, month, year and see what you are grateful for
    2. Who are thankful is part of your life
    3. What happened that is awesome
  2. Express more gratitude
    1. Say Thank You more often
      1. Say Thank You to someone you normally wouldn't - one a day
    2. Do things for others without expecting anything in return
    3. Pick up some Thank You cards and start sending hand-written Thank You notes

 

I am grateful for these times that we live in and thankful that you are part of this amazing community.

Nov 23

E593: Project Planning Process

Those who fail to plan, plan to fail.  Ben Franklin

 

  1. Project planning is a key part of successful projects
    1. It determines how we are going to execute the project
    2. Takes the estimate to a workable plan - Overview to details
    3. Creates the understanding for the team to follow
  2. The fundamentals of good planning
    1. Start before signing the contract - start the review to catch any errors
    2. Include your operations, estimating, accounting, and others in the planning process
    3. Schedule review meetings with each sector (can be quick one on one meetings)
    4. Do a final review with the team and management (or peer review)
  3. The level of detail for your plan will vary on your projects
    1. All plans should include:
      1. The review process
      2. Construction budget - not the estimate
      3. Construction schedule
    2. Additional items can be added as needed:
      1. Purchasing plan
      2. Responsibility matrix
      3. Deliverables matrix
      4. Resource plans
      5. Equipment plans
      6. etc.

Nov 22

E592: Updating Your Company Website

Over 80% of potential customers rely on websites to help make their buying decisions.

 

  1. It's 2016, an updated company website is a must
    1. 94% of B2B and 80% of B2C consumers will review your website before buying
    2. A website provides potential customers with an understanding of your qualifications
    3. How does your company show up on the web? Is it time to update?
  2. Start with the basics
    1. The web design needs to be responsive - able to be viewed on all devices
    2. The basic components
      1. Contact info on home page - phone number and link to "Contact Us"
      2. Information about what you do
      3. A portfolio of projects - segmented for easy viewing
      4. An about page
    3. Your contact form should collect basic information - not too complicated
  3. Once you cover the basics start building advanced features
    1. A blog section
      1. Write blogs that build your companies authority
        1. How to find the right contractor / Tips for remodeling / Etc.
    2. A resource section
      1. Provide information to help buyers with the decisions they need to make
        1. Papers / checklists / links to other web resources / etc.
    3. Testimonials
      1. Provide testimonials from previous customers - allow potential customers a way to talk with other clients

Nov 21

E591: Getting a Little Extra

Sometimes we have to dig deep and put in a little extra effort.

 

The Contractor's Strategic Planning course is live. Learn more here.

 

  1. We often find ourselves in times where we need to get a little more
    1. We need some more billings for the month
    2. We need to meet a deadline
    3. We need that little extra push
  2. Leaders step up and make it happen
    1. Your rally your teams
    2. You dig a little deeper yourself
    3. You get the most out of yourself and others
  3. When you need the extra push, roll up your sleeves
    1. Build a strong why
    2. Make a solid plan
    3. Celebrate the success

 

Let's all go out this next 5 weeks and increase our billings by 10%!

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