Top 15 items for 2015
1. Be strategic. Identify your vision and priorities. Set a leadership team retreat and put your plan in writing. Get outside help if needed – this is a vital step in your organization.
2. Create a marketing action plan. Use your strategic plan to define the elements of your business that you want to increase and define your target market as well as key contacts.
3. Measure your marketing results. Don’t use past expenses as a standard for future strategies – or worse yet based on your competitors. Look at each expense to determine the return on investment.
4. Read at least one business book per month. This will provide the tools you need to elevate your leadership.
5. Develop a compensation plan for your top performers. Make sure that you are rewarding their efforts commensurate with what they bring to the company.
6. Develop new accounts don’t be overly dependent on vendor programs. Vendor programs create consistent work but make you dependent on the companies. Be in control of your company and your work sources.
7. Study your financials – know the numbers of your business. This will allow you to make objective business decisions rather than reactive subjective decisions.
8. Invest in your people – create a training plan for all your employees. Give your employees the training to improve their skillset and performance. Include a robust internal training system as well as engaging with outside resources.
9. Increase your national networking – become familiar with what is working in other marketplaces and other companies and also to understand industry trends.
10. Back off on technology and focus on relationships both with your employees and your clients. Technology is good in your business but the pendulum is tipping to a degree where interpersonal communications are being removed from the equation.
11. Review your clients and make sure you operate in a win-win relationship. Check profitability, cash flow, service levels and types of jobs. Make sure the return is worth the effort.
12. Define best practices for your key staff members. Set metrics and make sure they are performing to expectations.
13. Review your work to assure you are providing value to your clients. Too often restorers only assure that the numbers fit into the Xactimate formula or if you can prove you place equipment on a job. Look at all the work you complete to assure that you are delivering value.
14. Review your staff and subcontractor pool to assure that you are delivering quality work on every project. Do a full assessment of your staff and make sure they fit your value system and are delivering the product that you expect.
15. Implement a customer service system. Define staff training, orientation and create a system to assure that you are delivering exceptional results on every project.