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Can Your Business Survive Another Month Like This?

It's time to reinvent your business. Here's how.

April 22, 2020
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Robi Kirsic remodeler

Now, more than ever, is the time to go line by line through all of your expenses and ask “Do I really need this?”

This is the time to reinvent ourselves and our businesses.

In the last month, I have been as busy as I ever have been. I am focusing deeply on the business, not in the business. I am focusing on policy, procedures, and our project management software. Before now, I’ve been so busy spending time on job sites, client meetings, and proposals that many of the fundamentals were put to the side. “I’ll get to it when I have time,” was what I told myself. Well now I have time, and I’m using it. You probably have time too. Take this opportunity to focus on the aspects of your company that are really important. When the doors re open, it will be a completely reinvented business ready to take on anything.

Here are the areas I recommend addressing.

Expenses

Now, more than ever, is the time to go line by line through all of your expenses and ask “Do I really need this?” The answer is: If it doesn’t provide value to your client then remove it. If it doesn’t provide a service that simplifies your processes then remove it. Make your business leaner.

Staff

Now more than ever is the time to evaluate your team. I won’t lie; I’ve had B or even C team players in the past simply because the talent pool has been so slim. Identify your A team and do everything in your power to keep them. Make sure that they understand your intentions during this time and your plans to get through it. The B and C players are just not good enough. Services: Now, more than ever is the time to look at what you offer homeowners. In all of my years in business, I’ve never used the words; “This project is too small for us.” That is one of the reasons I’m confident we will get though this. The doors will open and we will get back to work, but will the work be the same as before? No. It’s going to be different. It may not be the full gut renovation. Instead, it may be just a simple thing that is driving a homeowner crazy while they are stuck inside. Handyman services might be the first source of revenue, which makes me happy since that is a service we have provided for years.

Virtual Selling

Now more than ever is the time to evaluate how you are selling. To me this is not a new process. I’ve been meeting clients virtually ever since the mobile phone added a video calling feature. One of our projects last year was done completely virtually for an overseas client. I met the homeowner for the first time three months after the renovation process started. I also use video calls for emergency repair and trouble-shooting. If I receive an emergency call from a client, my first reaction is “let’s get on video.” I want to see what’s going on before I drive an hour to find out that the outlet isn’t working because a breaker tripped. For the people that used to say, “Well this is how we do things,” now more than ever is the time to rethink how you meet with clients.

Now more than ever is the time to evaluate your team.

Jobsite Cleanliness

Now more than ever is the time to really put stronger policies into place. How are we going to convince our client that it’s safe to bring us into their homes? NARI and OSHA have guidelines for just this. Please place those documents on your website, attach them to all contracts, and post them on jobsites. This shows our clients that we care.

Project Management

Now more than ever it’s time evaluate how you communicate with your team, subcontractors and clients. If text and email has been the method than that is something to change. There are many programs out there. We have been using BuilderTrend for years, however I have not taken advantage of all of its features because I was “too busy to learn how to use it.” We now we have taken the time to go through each option, scheduling virtual training with the support team to learn more. This way we can better use the platform to simplify our life.

It seems that in times like this we are not in control of anything. That may be true. I believe though that we can control how we react. And that makes a big difference.

About the Author


Robi Kirsic is co-CEO of TimeLine Renovation & Design in New York. He has also served as the president of the National Association of the Remodeling Industry. Kirsic can be reached at Robi@timelinerenovations.com

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