Think Like an Owner

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Pass this on to all employees.

It is not enough in this economy to wait for the boss to tell you what to do. If you want to grow your career, you have to think and act like an owner or CEO. Ask yourself, “What would an entrepreneur do to help this company grow?” Here are some answers.

  1. Bring in prospects

The success of your company depends on its ability to attract new clients; but this is not just the role of marketing. “Everyone in the company is in sales,” says successful contractor, Joe Markell.

How can you help the company gain new clients? Personally, I find that the best way is to give a talk in front of potential clients, on a topic you are an expert. For me, it might mean giving a talk on ‘leadership’ or ‘time management.’ For you? It might mean giving a talk at a garden club or trade association. Selling can also mean passing your business card to people you meet on the street and at the deli. Whomever you meet, collect and pass along the good contacts you make to your sales team. Help the company grow, and you will too.

  1. Find Efficiencies

For every dollar a company saves, it is 8-20 times more valuable to the company than making a dollar in new sales. Why is this? Because that dollar saved goes right to the bottom line. It is pure profit. In my experience, in-efficiencies can happen in the following areas:

  • warranty
  • material wastage
  • call-back’s from a client
  • go-backs due to incomplete work
  • unproductive yard time.
  • unbillable time.
  • unbilled extra work
  • down time due to equipment failure
  • inaccurate or incomplete paperwork

Put on your thinking cap and find ways to help. If you are not sure where to start, ask your boss where he/she is trying to improve efficiencies. They will appreciate the fact that you care. Increasing job efficiency can start with taking an extra walk around before you leave a client’s property. You can’t go wrong by raising your head and opening your eyes and taking a bigger look at what is going on around you.

“You will do better when you help your company do better”, Jeffrey Scott

  1. Bring a “Yes Attitude” to work

You can single-handedly lift the attitude of your crew, and even your department, by having a consistent, outwardly positive attitude.

“The attitude of few, influences the attitude of many,” Jeffrey Scott

Be optimistic no matter the challenge, even when others are negative. Lift other people’s outlook by keeping yours high. This includes saying “Yes” when a peer or supervisor asks you for help. Just say Yes, and find out how you can help. Positive attitudes are infectious – bring a Yes Attitude to work, and you will become instrumental in improving your company’s can-do spirit.

  1. Generate referrals

Your clients will refer you when they are wowed by your work and by the impression you leave with them each day when you come onto and leave their property. Every customer contact is an opportunity to make them happy they hired you. It starts with a genuine smile and a wave hello, and an extra touch like picking up their paper or garbage blowing around. It is further supported by a genuine question to see if there is anything else they need, and it ends with a job site cleaner than you found it. For those in the office, making your client feel ‘special’ each time they call will go a long way. When you find out the clients name, repeat it and give them a phone-hug,  “Mr Smith, I am SO glad you called, how can I help you today!” Say this with enthusiasm, and you will be remembered and referred. I guarantee it!

  1. Learn valuable skills

Would you like to increase your chances of earning a raise? One thing you can do: learn new skills that your company needs in order to stay competitive. What skill would help you become more productive and help your company win more work? If you are not sure, ask your supervisor for suggestions. The more you learn and apply in a productive manner, the more you can earn. But don’t do it just for the money.

“Life is a journey, punctuated by learning new skills,” Jeffrey Scott 

The more skills you master, the more you will feel motivated and satisfied by your work, and the more confident you will be. Do it for the internal satisfaction!

  1. Bring a higher standard to work.

Owners like employees who are focused and want to do things right.  But since no one is perfect, there is always room to improve. Where can you improve your focus and workmanship? Where do you have go-backs, or where do you spend excessive time? Where are your clients not 100% thrilled with your work?

Start with reflection:

  • On Friday think about one thing you could improve from the previous week, and commit to improving on it the following week.
  • Make notes at the end of each day on how you did to improve.
  • Keep a little black book of improvements!
  • Find one specific area each week to improve on.

By the end of a full year you will have improved in over 50 areas! Wow – that will have a huge impact with yourself, your clients and your company! Sweat the details, and your clients and boss will notice.

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