With few exceptions, business owners in our industry aren’t known for disciplined strategic planning when it comes to profit. Instead, we’re known for being busy. That’s not a critique; just a fact. But profit is much more than just a good idea or an afterthought.
Now, busy in the sense of having a lot of projects to build is not a bad thing. But busy in terms of working longer hours to keep the wheels from coming off is a bad thing. It’s unsustainable. Working longer and harder is not a strategy nor is it the answer to creating a self-sustaining and consistently profitable company. Working smarter and more strategically is!
Structuring your building business for lasting success (defined as great profit and time to enjoy it) can seem like a pipedream if you’re buried in day-to-day activities like most construction business owners. However, with goals clearly documented and leadership prioritized over busyness, no challenge, bottleneck or roadblock can stop you from succeeding if you really want to! So, if your construction company is struggling to stay ahead of the curve and gain solid financial momentum, especially without demanding longer hours and deeper involvement from you, what can you do about it?
Taking Action Strategically
What do you really want? If it’s great profits, peace of mind and time for the things and people that really matter to you, then disciplined strategy is your answer. Here are some proven steps to initiate some immediate and lasting changes that will re-energize you and your building business:
Get a fresh start. Take yourself out of the line of fire, isolated from people, problems and distractions in order to think. For starters, aim for as little as 1/2 hour per day. Try blocking out the time on your calendar, the same way you do for a doctor’s appointment or client meeting. Invest that precious time to write out the answers to some compelling questions like “What do I really want?”, “Why do we exist?”, “How much net profit do I really want and need to make this all worthwhile?”, “What will that goal require in terms of sales revenue and gross profit margin achieve it?”, “Who is my ideal customer?”, “How will we engage with them and convert them into customers?”, “What positions need to be hired to free up my time for leadership?”, and “What people changes must we make to create a high-performance team?”.
Within one week, you will have completed 2-1/2 hours of disciplined planning, and likely will have a sense that you’ve accomplished something significant on your journey to financial independence and peace of mind! That’s the first step to lasting and rewarding change. But, as you’ve probably already noticed, it does not happen accidentally.
Next, in your planning time, determine your gross profit percentage goal and break-even revenue so you can predict how much revenue (work produced and invoiced to your customers) it will take to achieve your profit goals. If you need some help, try out the Legacy GPScorecard to easily calculate these numbers, or click here for a brief tutorial.
Knowing where you want to go is a great first step, but the numbers create your road map to get there. And leaving this crucial step up to “my bookkeeper” is just a lousy excuse to avoid the hard work. Just do it, or your strategy just became ‘hope’, and we all know how that works out.
Finally, document the strategies (how we will do it) and action steps (what we will do) needed to reach your financial goals, and who will take ownership of each step. This is the hardest part of strategic planning – actually having the discipline and perseverance to do things differently. To capture and track all of this, download the Legacy One Page Strategic Plan document here.
It may mean course correcting or hiring new people, increasing prices, saying no to problematic customers, holding regular planning and issues-solving meetings, documenting and implementing systems, adjusting (adding or deleting) overhead expenses, or getting the entire team more focused on the vision and mission. Well thought out plans with well executed action steps is the only way businesses change, grow and thrive. There are no shortcuts!
You Can Change The Game Today – That’s a Fact!
Disciplined planning and action always gets positive results. There is no exception to this rule! Will you capture your share of the profits in the coming months and years? They are there for the taking for any leader committed to doing the hard work. Think of it this way, if you and your organization improve just 1% per day, you will have a completely different company at the end of the year.
What’s your plan? What needs to change? Legacy Business Leaders has the answers you need to help make your epic leap to self-sustaining success in the building industry. Feel free to head over to the Legacy website and schedule a no-obligation conversation to find out if coaching could be a good fit and strong ROI for you! Or check out and download any of the Builder Templates there as well. We’re here to accelerate your path to blazing profits and lasting success – results guaranteed!
Wishing you the best!
Legacy Business Leaders, LLC
Fred Reikowsky, LPBC