One piece of advice

The second best business decision I ever made was 7 years ago – I hired a business coach to help me in my business. There’s so much that you can’t see and figure out when you’re in the middle of it.

Everyone needs a coach. Perhaps I can help you in that role. I offer a complimentary coaching call here, please consider signing up for it.

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A little while back in my free private Facebook group for remodelers (called Remodelers Community), I posted this:

‘Tell me one piece of advice you would offer any remodeler.’

Here are a few of the responses that I thought you would benefit from hearing:

  • Learn how to sell projects. Not in a stiff formal way, but rather in a relaxed how can you help your clients get what they want and need
  • Set a work schedule and stick to it. The more you offer up of yourself and your time, the more people are going to take it. Everyone needs time off – working weekends is NOT mandatory.
  • Think Big! Think Change! Too many remodelers stuck in the “old ways”
  • Don’t loose track of your customers after the sale. Make sure you are on job sites talking with your customers, leads, and subs. Frequency of interaction builds trust. Don’t just come around to pick up progress payments.
  • Hire Kyle Hunt to help you learn marketing and sales
  • Find your niche
  • Know your costs
  • Learn how to operate the robots that will replace installers in the next 10 years and learn to use the programs that will replace your designers :) In all seriousness, look to future, things will change rapidly
  • The owner should always take a paycheck
  • Measure twice cut once
  • Know exactly what your markup is and apply it to every single job, no matter how large or small.
  • Know your strengths in the business and weakness… don’t be too proud to look for those that can make your weakness become your strength.
  • Revenue Flow…. Trailing liabilities…. Leads, Leads and more leads.. Always do a little more than you say you will
  • Do what you say you will do

 

Two weeks notice from your main guy. Crap.

Sure, it’s important to continue to generate quality leads.

It’s important to improve your sales process and turn more of those leads into paying projects.

Yes, you need to be staying in touch with your previous clients.

Of course, continue to be smart and invest time and energy in your marketing and sales process (maybe with my program.)

But, in our industry right now – in your business right now – not much is more important than keeping your people happy and fulfilled in their job (especially your carpenters.)

I received this yesterday from one of my clients:

‘Kyle – Reaching out for some input. Our main carpenter just gave his two weeks notice. This is a big blow – especially in this busy season.’

I send this email to serve as a reminder – take care of your team! Let them know you care about them.

Ask each of them, ‘what do you need from me? How can I help you enjoy your job and continue to grow and improve?

Take the time to let them know you value them and that you care about them. Invest in training them.

That survey response you received from your client about how much they loved having ‘Joe’ (your guy) in their home – print it out, attach a thank you and gas card to it.

Your team is a very, very valuable asset. Do everything you can to continue to strengthen your relationship with them.

There’s no magic bullet or tip I have for you on this. Just care and do everything you can to make them feel valued and respected.

And continue to recruit. Always be on the lookout for new potential talent and team members. Be aggressive with it and don’t sit back on your heels.

About 6 weeks ago this happened

About 6 weeks ago, a client I’ve been working with for a while asked if we could review his sales process.

He’s made a lot of changes and improvements over the last year and wanted a tune-up and to review things.

Smart, right? Never settle and think you’ve got it all figured out (me with you.)

He shared with me the questions he’s asking on the initial phone call with a new remodeling prospect.

How he’s explaining his design agreement and process. How he’s using Remodelers AutoPilot. His process when he gets to the home for the initial in-person meeting.

As we were digging into things, one thing jumped out at me…

I asked him, ‘Hey, how many minutes have your initial phone calls with new prospects been? Sounds like you’re rushing through that step a bit…’

He agreed – he hasn’t been setting up the call well and letting them know the call usually lasts 10-15 minutes and confirming with them that that works for them.

He hasn’t been asking as many questions about their project. He hasn’t been explaining his process as well as he used to.

And what this has caused is that he’s quickly booking a time to go out and meet with them. He hasn’t qualified them very well. He hasn’t talked budget with them at all. He hasn’t built a lot of know, like, and trust with them. He hasn’t been differentiating himself from the other remodelers these people may be talking with.

And that has all added to him wasting a lot of his precious (and limited!) time.

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Fast forward, and over the last few weeks he’s gotten back to the things he learned and was previously doing.

He told me, ‘I’ve been saying to prospects that ‘this call usually lasts between 10-15 minutes, does that work for you?’ – and it’s changed the entire tone of the conversation! We’re taking more time to get to know each other. I’m understanding them and their project more. We are talking about budget much more often.

And besides all of the benefits that come from those things – I’m protecting my time because I’m weeding out the tire kickers and folks that aren’t a good fit (in a professional way.)’

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Punch line for you – take a look at your sales process.

What can you be doing more/less of? Don’t settle! And don’t back slide! Keep improving.

Free Coaching Call – If you’d like to get feedback on your sales process for your remodeling business, request a free coaching call with me. We’ll talk for 20-30 minutes and I’ll give you some ideas/advice.

More focus on fewer things

I’m feeling refreshed after a week-long vacation with the family. A vacation with four kids always begs for a ‘vacation from the vacation,’ but it’s all good :)

I was able to disconnect my brain from the work side of life while we were away, but what’s interesting is that I had one clear epiphany that came to me last week.

I’m working on too many things in my business.

Over the last several months, I’ve been dabbling with 8-10 projects – new marketing initiatives, testing and trying things, planning new events or products/services, etc.

What needs to happen in order to drive better results:

More focus on fewer things.

So this morning I spent some time selecting the 2-3 things that are going to get 90% of my time/attention.

Note: These are 2-3 on the business things that are going to get 90% of the time I have set aside for working on the business (vs. in the business.)

I’m not going to forget about the other projects, but I’m putting them squarely in the ‘Parking Lot’ – which are ideas that are still good but aren’t going to get any attention for now.

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This ‘more focus on fewer things’ mantra is probably applicable to your business as well? Something to think about.