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Busy and Broke Is Bad Business
The economy has taken its toll on almost every contractor you talk to. Contractors who relied almost exclusively on their reputations and being low bidders to win contracts are hurting the most. These contractors are really scrambling, because they never needed or had solid business development plans or programs in place during the boom times. They generally started their companies as good field technicians versus experienced solid businesspeople focused on sales as a business growth tool. They offered quality workmanship and lower prices. They kept busy, winning enough work against a few other bidders, but they weren’t doing any real marketing or offering any differentiating factors in their sales efforts.
Be different to grow
Other ways to set your company apart and offer more is to find service accounts at large national corporations or manufacturing companies who need ongoing service. Go to the headquarters of a big chain, like Starbucks, and talk about servicing all their stores. Or joint venture with a minority or disabled veteran, and get on government set-aside programs with the Small Business Administration, the military base nearby, or the department of transportation in your area. These types of work have difficult barriers to entry and, therefore, less competition. Contractors never had to do that before.
Make marketing mandatory
Don’t continue to look for work to keep you busy until the economy turns around. All that dead strategy will do is keep you busy and broke. Get uncomfortable and stop doing what you’ve always done.
George Hedley, HARDHAT Presentations
|Last Updated on Friday, 24 August 2012 08:28|