With over 20 years of experience, we have learned a few things about running a successful construction business over the years. Living life, and running a business, is all about trial and error. It’s about learning what works and what doesn’t, and learning from those that may be ahead in the process. A successful business means learning from failures and implementing structures that keep them from happening again. It also means learning what works and repeating those successes.
Running a construction business means meeting a new challenge everyday. Whether it’s in the planning phase, preparing estimates, ordering materials or managing a payment plan. It’s important to have a plan in place for each new challenge that may present itself, and to respond well when something unexpected happens.
The following are a few tips we would recommend for running a successful construction business.
Value Excellence and Integrity
A successful business is dependent on strong values. Values such as excellence and integrity should be the driving force in all that you do. Clients will have a greater appreciation for the work that you do when they see it is done with these values. They will also be much more likely to refer your business to other people. Additionally, work done with integrity and excellence will stand the test of time, meaning that the quality will speak for itself. Overall, it will lead to a good reputation in your community which is extremely important for building a successful business.
Honor the Timeline
Unfortunately there is often a stigma in the construction world that things always take longer than they should. But this doesn’t have to be the case. It is frustrating to clients, it usually ends up costing more, and it doesn’t lead to a good reputation. Of course there are always elements that you can’t control, but do everything in your power to honor the timeline you give your clients. Start by giving them a reasonable timeline that you know you can keep up with, which will help you stick with it.
People can only work with you if they can effectively get in touch with you. This may seem like a given, but it’s sad how rare good communication is today. Start by setting up a proper voicemail. Then answer the phone as much as you can, and return voicemails promptly. Additionally, when you speak with people, speak clearly and confidently. Take notes while you speak with a potential client to remember exactly what information was given to avoid confusion. Clients and contractors will have much more confidence in working with you if you are clear and assertive.
The next best tip is to choose your projects wisely. It may be noble to give potential clients the benefit of the doubt, but it can also be naive. Unfortunately, there are many sad stories of construction jobs that did not end well with bills left unpaid. There’s no way to protect against this completely, but you can proceed cautiously.
When agreeing to work with another contractor or company, get references if you can. Put some feelers out and see what their reputation is with other contractors and companies. Check in on other jobs they have done. Some simple awareness could save you from a huge headache down the road.
Have an Outlet
Although it’s not directly related to construction itself, this tip is just as important. Have an outlet. Have somewhere you go, someone you talk to, or something you do that helps you relieve stress and recharge. The world of construction is very demanding and stressful. At times, the pressure can be overwhelming. It’s important to remember that you aren’t the energizer bunny. Everyone needs an outlet that lets them get away from the stress, recharge, and return to it with a clear head. So whether it’s a a hobby, or a spouse, or some type of community service, find something that recharges you. It is a necessary piece to building a successful construction business.
These are simply a few tips for a successful construction business, but ones that we are passionate about at Waldron Carpentry. Whether you’re working with a carpentry contractor like us, a contracted employee, or a potential new lead, it’s important to keep these tips in mind. They will serve you well in building a business that succeeds and achieves a good reputation in the surrounding community.