5 Ways to Make 2019 a Record-Breaking Year
by Mike J. Agugliaro
None of them will take more than an hour to do yet each can have a profound impact on the rest of your year.
It’s 2019. Where did you think you’d be in life and business at this point? For some Contractors, you’re right on track and growing exactly the way you want to be; for others, you’re feeling like you’re behind where you want to be and you desperately want to catch up.
What you’re about to read are five fast, simple ways to change the game for your business in 2019. None of these will take more than an hour of your time each, so you can spread them out over the next week or two… but doing them now will set you up for the best year yet — a year that helps you grow like never before, catapulting you beyond where you are now to a new and higher level.
Let’s dig in to these simple, fast ways. Again, none of them will take more than an hour to do yet will have a profound impact on the rest of your year.
1. Create a vision.
Take some time to envision what you want to achieve for the year. Whether you’ve done this practice for the longer term (to envision what you want in business for the next three, five, 10, or 20 years), you should at least take the time to create a vision in your mind for what you want to do this year.
Many Contractors will close their eyes for five minutes, tell themselves that they want to be more successful, then open their eyes and check this task off their list. However, you should take a full hour (or more if needed) and really dig in to what you want to achieve by December 31, 2019. How many team members? How many happy customers? How much revenue? How much profit? Live and breathe this vision then write it down in detail.
2. Pick a theme for the year.
You and your employees show up every day to work. Over time, each day and each year tends to blend together in your minds and some days it just feels like you are running out the clock. What you need in your business is a fun, engaging theme that ties together everything you want to achieve in the year. Your theme will focus your employees’ minds and give you something to talk about at company meetings. Create activities, contests, and internal marketing documents around these concepts.
If your vision is to grow by 25% then you might have a theme around 25% growth; then you talk about what it means to improve everything by 25% — what that looks like in the day-to-day work. Or if your vision is to build a strong culture then you might have a theme around being a tight-knit Special Forces; then you talk about how you never leave a man behind, and how you stick up for each other.
3. Assign KPIs.
Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) are measurements that you make on specific activities by team members. For your sales team it might be the number of contracts they close; for your techs, it might be average time on a job. If possible, tie your KPI to the theme you’ve chosen for the year (so that if you are focusing on 25% growth then your KPI should be whether they are 25% better in some aspect than the average).
If KPIs are new to you, and if they seem like a daunting amount of bureaucracy then pick just one KPI that you can measure your employees on. Don’t try to do a whole bunch. Make it easy on yourself and easy on your team to know the one important measurement you need to make this year. The added administrative effort of tracking KPIs might seem like a lot but you will notice a profound difference in your whole company when you take your KPIs seriously — it will focus your team and you’ll grow like never before.
Find experts, mentors, coaches, and teachers who can give you the information and guidance to fill in the gaps and show you how to do what to do.
4. List your challenges.
Every business has challenges; every business owner has frustrations. These can hold you back from growth by taking up a lot of your time to solve them every day. Make a list of your biggest challenges that keep you awake at night and then work on solving them. (If there are too many challenges and you’re not sure where to start, identify the ones that are keeping you from achieving the vision you created, above).
How do you solve them? Build a system. For every problem you have, build a system around the problem so that it is solved automatically. The easiest way to start is to identify a problem then build a checklist that someone has to fill out to ensure the problem is solved. For example, do you have team members forgetting to return shared equipment at the end of the day? Create a checklist that everyone needs to fill out when they return the truck keys, and that checklist should include: “Did you return the shared equipment to the warehouse?”
5. Create your learning plan.
It’s one thing to want to improve; it’s another to actually do it. Contractors end up lost in a sea of information as they flail around looking for answers to questions they haven’t fully articulated. The better approach is to be strategic about your learning: based on your vision, what do you need to know in order to achieve that vision?
Make a list of the topics, opportunities, and challenges that you face. Then, start reading strategically about those specific areas (a great place to start is right here in CONTRACTOR Magazine!) Next, find experts, mentors, coaches, and teachers who can give you the information and guidance to fill in the gaps and show you how to do what to do. Instead of drowning in information, you end up getting laser-focused on learning what you need
Are there other things to do for a great year? Of course there are! But these five simple, fast strategies will give you a strong start to the year and help you turn 2019 into a record-breaking year for your business. Every contractor should do these every single January to elevate their business for the year. These five strategies may seem simple (and they are very fast to do) yet they can have a massive impact on how your business grows this year.
See the full article on ContractorMag HERE
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