I recently had Tony Booth on the Podcast to talk about his Contractor “success formula for contractors” which can be briefly explained as – Right People with Right Tools on Right Projects for Right Clients = Success.
Tony said he often get asked, “what’s the secret to being successful?” Everyone is searching for that Silver Bullet that makes everything magically work. It doesn’t exist, and in fact – you leave yourself prey to all kinds of predatory people selling unrealistic courses – snake oil salesmen, and bullshit artists.
Tony worked in a 3 million dollar contracting business – went to work for an 8 billion dollar business, and then realized small businesses could really use some of the systems focus that the larger businesses had.
Put the right people, with the right tools, on the right projects, for the right clients.
Put shortly – your business needs to have systems in place.
Instead of looking for a quick fix / magical course to fix your ills – instead, you need to find ways to get these habits and systems in place for the long haul, and these habits and systems can be grouped into these four categories to remember them easily and organize what you’re doing:
How to have the “Right People” in place:
- Build a team that has the knowledge and expertise to deliver
- Make sure they know what’s expected of them
- I added – my little way of identify ‘right people’ for the right job – they have to ‘Get it, want it, and have the capacity to do it.’ – Want it doesn’t just mean working for your company, it also relates to the type of project. If they want to work for your company, but they don’t want the particular specialty job you’re offering, they aren’t the ‘right person’ for that job.
What does “Right Tools” mean for contractors?
- The systems and tools to perform their job
- The support they need
- I added – “We love awesome tools like BuilderTrend a, but the tools aren’t going to do the work for you. You have to get your systems organized independently, and same goes for lead-tracking systems like PipeDrive or Salesforce. You need to organize the manpower, do the work (satisfy the customer, so there’s more jobs to organize,) get the marketing ‘heavy lifting’ done so that your marketing strategies actually create leads for these systems to track.
What does it mean to have the “Right Projects”?
- Not every job is right for you – do projects that fit
- Project type, scope, size, schedule, requirements – stay in your lane
- I added – the more you can do the SAME type of work – the more you can template your systems, and get more profitable. Your team then finds efficiencies – this is one of the best parts about having a ‘niche’ in construction.
Who are the “Right Clients” and how do you weed out the wrong ones?
- Clients that work with you for your unique services – not low price
- Clients that are willing to pay for services provided
- I added – We often help contractors get more leads, but we can’t filter them for you, so it becomes even more important for these folks to learn how to turn down bad jobs. It’s important to get long-term systems in place for filtering – educating, and onboarding clients.
- It’s ok to define a price range for your services – and turn down people who don’t have the budget, if you have leads flowing in on a good pace, or are behind 6 months. That’s appropriate and healthy – and doesn’t have to be a negative thing. Then you can go after ideal customers with a stronger emphasis on detailed estimates, and holding your best prospects hand more.
It’s not a Silver Bullet but it’s the best way to build a successful contracting business.
It was a blast having Tony – a contractor management consultant on the podcast!
Check out his podcast – the ‘Contractor Coachcast’ on iTunes, Stitcher and wherever podcasts are listened to.
Link for listeners to connect with a contracting coach and get free gifts: www.contractingcoach.com/nextlevel
We’ll have Tony on again soon – next time we’ll be talking about how to hire and train the best employees!