Profit First for Contractors

Kyle Interviews Shawn Van Dyke

Shawn Van Dyke is a construction industry business coach, speaker, and author and has taken the core concepts of Mike Michalowicz’s Profit First and customized them to address the specific needs of the construction industry in his book, Profit First for Contractors.

Shawn is a great and knowledgeable guy and in this recording, once I get past talking about his vs. my hair,

I interview him on:

– Making Cents of the Financial Statements – Why it’s so important to understand your numbers

– How Profit First for Contractors Works – What it is, the basic format of it, and why it works.

– We dig into the Initial Assessment Exercise from Profit First

– And then do some rapid-fire questions about helping you forget about Industry Standards, Destroying Debt, and other key takeaways we’d like to you walk away from this recording with.

Enjoy! You can find a copy of the book at:

If you’d prefer to listen, rather than watch, you can find the audio on the Remodelers on the Rise podcast here. 


You might see a mess… I see $5400 of savings!

The left side of this image might look like a bit of mess. But it is a BEAUTIFUL mess!

I grabbed the screenshot during a recent Remodelers Circle mastermind meeting. My client mentioned he has a lot of stuff stacked up in the back of his office now because he decided he didn’t need to be spending $450/month on a storage unit that he had been renting for a long time.

That’s $5400 that he will NOT be spending on the storage unit and that he can reinvest in his business, put in savings, or draw from the company.


Hold every dollar you spend in your business accountable! Is it really worth it? Do you HAVE to spend it? Challenge every expense you have and cut the fat.

One of my clients shared this the other day: “Even though times are good – I want to run my business like things AREN’T good. I’ve been through this a time or two – things will cool off and I don’t want to be stuck running a business that’s spending too much.”

P.S. In the case of my client, he’s putting the $5400 towards a new benefit he’s offering to his employees. He sees the goodwill and benefit of that as much more important than the storage unit and bit of a mess he needs to sort through in his office. I agree!

How to market your remodeling business

Marketing is best defined as getting someone who has a need to know, like, and trust you.

Why do I create free content? (This email, private Facebook group, podcast, social media, etc.)

Primarily: To build know, like, and trust with my audience, market my business, and generate leads. Additionally, by putting out content that is truly useful, practical, and valuable – I’m helping remodelers who I may never have a chance to work closely with and I love that! That’s another key goal of mine.

Why should YOU create free content? For the same reasons: To build know, like, and trust with your audience, market your business, and generate leads. The key is to create content that is truly valuable and helpful to the homeowners you are aiming to serve.

Think about that and start teaching people about the remodeling process, answer their questions in your content, and provide information that they will find helpful.

Below you’ll find links to all of my free content – I hope you find them helpful!

(I highly recommend the first two)

Remodelers Community – This is a great and free private Facebook group that I run. Has a lot of great conversation and sharing from over 480+ quality remodelers

Remodelers On The Rise – I dusted off my podcast in 2018 and will continue to post regularly in 2019. Good ideas/inspiration/interviews for you and some that might be good for you to share with employees/trade partners

Text Message Club – Interested In Getting Text Messages From Me? Might be a quick idea for your remodeling business or word of encouragement. By joining, it will allow me to regularly check-in, nudge, encourage, help, and say hi via text! No cost – just fill out this quick form

Remodeling Magazine Articles – See articles that I write for Remodeling Magazine here

YouTube – Throughout the year I’ll post videos, webinar recordings, and other content on my YouTube channel. You can subscribe here

Social Media – Please make sure we are connected on Facebook (business page) (personal page), LinkedInInstagram

CLARITY on the Expected vs. Actual Gross Profit Of Your Remodeling Projects

I recorded a screen share with my client, Nancy – it’s showing the steps that she takes in QuickBooks to have CLARITY on the Expected vs. Actual Gross Profit on the remodeling projects she’s doing.

When you put a proposal together for that kitchen remodel – you should clearly know how much Gross Profit (which is Selling Price – Materials/Sub-Contractors/Labor)

The expected Gross Profit should be clear.

And when you complete the job you should be able to clearly see the ACTUAL Gross Profit you made on the job.

Nancy sets this up in a clear and nice way in QuickBooks. It’s certainly not the only way to do this, but my hope is that there’s something in the video that you can grab and learn from that will help you bring clarity to your job costing.

Are you currently clear with your expected vs. actual gross profit or is this an area for you to work on? Would love to hear in the comments below.