In this issue, we’ll be discussing a few specific topics listed below:
January Being a Slow Month and How to Combat It
As a building business owner, it’s not uncommon to experience slow months, especially in the early part of the year. January can be a particularly tough time, as many people are still recovering from the holiday season and may not be ready to commit to a new building project. However, there are steps that building business owners can take to combat slow months and ensure that their business stays afloat. One of the most effective strategies is to increase your marketing spend in the lead-up to the end of the year.
This can help generate a backlog of leads that you can work on once the new year begins. Another tip is to focus on building a pipeline of guaranteed work that is signed up before the new year starts. This can help give you peace of mind before the end of the year, knowing you have guaranteed income for the coming year.
Additionally, consider using slow months as an opportunity to work on the business itself. This can be a great time to go over your expenses and look for ways to save extra money. Spend a day, grab a coffee, print out a bank statement from the last month, and highlight any transactions that maybe could be reduced or completely eliminated. Go through and highlight any expenses you think aren’t important and make a conscious effort to reduce those completely. You’ll be surprised.
You could also consider making a few cold calls to existing clients or working on systems to streamline your business operations.
By focusing on marketing and lead generation, building a pipeline of work, and working on the business itself, building business owners can effectively combat slow months and ensure that their business stays strong through tough times.
Training Myself to Price and Present a QS Report
When I first started pricing projects, I used to just use Xero quotes and simple Excel spreadsheets. But as my company grew, I realized it was important to break down prices into labor, sub-trades, and materials to track data accurately and ensure profitability on every job, not just one or two.
So, I taught myself how to create more detailed spreadsheets by watching YouTube videos and learning basic Excel skills. I also started tracking labor hours and detailing every single task using my building knowledge. By adding these extra layers of detail, I was able to get a better understanding of where our costs were coming from and make sure we were making money on every job.
To present these pricing documents to clients, I worked with my graphic designer girlfriend to create a simple, easy-to-read PDF template. I wanted to avoid the jargon-heavy, confusing templates that I had seen from other quantity surveyors, so we kept it straightforward with just the spreadsheet and a clean layout.
Your Local Council Body Holding your Project Up?
As a building professional, it can be frustrating to deal with council districts that hold up building consents and cause delays in building projects.
These delays can have a ripple effect, causing frustration and financial strain for builders and their clients. One of the main causes of these delays is often the incompetence of council staff. It’s not uncommon for staff to lack the knowledge or resources to process building consents in a timely manner.
While it’s not always possible to avoid council delays, it’s important to be proactive in your approach. Communicate regularly with council staff, provide clear documentation, and be prepared to answer any questions they may have. It’s also a good idea to keep a record of all communication and correspondence with the council, so you have a clear timeline of events if any issues arise.
Overall, the key is to be prepared and keep an open line of communication and keep accurate records. With a little extra effort and attention, you can minimize delays.
My advice to combat this is to ‘Generate more business.’ Have more jobs you can squeeze in between council consents. Smaller Maintenance – reclads – little bathroom renovations – kitchen renovations are perfect fill-in jobs. Easy cash flow and no days off for your staff.
Marketing Discussion next week, and we will add a video link with a Digital Nomad generating endless amounts of business for Service-based Businesses across New Zealand.
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