Planning to start a carpentry business? Or simply in need of a strategy review? This list could be very useful in upping your game and securing your dream carpentry business.
1. Be in the loop on market trends in your location.
- What does the housing market look like in your area?
- What kinds of carpentry jobs have the highest demand?
- What’s the typical profile of your target client base?
2. Pick and master your carpentry business specialty.
- Which jobs are you best at? Structural or detail work? Are you more into engineering or design?
- How well do you understand blueprints or operating carpentry tools?
- How many years have you trained in carpentry? Did you go through apprenticeship?
- Did you get all proper certifications for your services?
3. Decide on your place of work, and who will wear the hats.
- Do you want to be a solopreneur with multiple hats, or do you need to delegate work among employees?
- Do you need a business partner?
- Are you home-based, or do you want to establish an office location?
- Which business systems come naturally to you (accounting, marketing, administration, sales, etc.)?
- Do you need in-office assistants, part-time employees, or specialized virtual assistants?
4. Develop a cohesive business plan.
- What image can you create for your brand that matches local business needs?
- Have you defined your profit goals (quarterly, semi-annually, annually)?
- What are your must-have investments to produce quality work?
- What investments can you make later down the line?
- Who can you turn to for expert business advice? Have you considered relaying your concerns to a business coach?
- Do you have a communication plan between clients and trades for each project?
- Do you have a project management software in place?
5. Manage safety risks, and get the right insurance plan.
- What type of insurance matches the risk involved in your jobs?
- Which companies offer the best insurance plans for carpenters?
- Do you have a well-devised safety plan on-site (gear, regulations, accountability, etc.)?
- How knowledgeable are you of the safety codes in your area?
6. Bid smart, and pay smart.
- Before bidding, do you carefully take into account all elements that incur job costs (materials, labor per hour, permits, structural conditions, services needed, etc.)?
- Do you have an accurate timesheet or time-tracking system per hour?
- Do your people strive to be as productive as possible within a given time frame? How do you plan on managing this?
7. Energize your marketing and public relations efforts.
- Does your company website have complete and updated information on your business profile, carpentry services and contact details?
- Do you have a game plan for social media presence?
- Have you created an online portfolio that features your work and raving testimonials?
- Do you have a company newsletter or press releases about you or your business?
- Are you familiar with email marketing tools, lead generation and customer relationship management software, and other digital marketing trends?
- Have you been expanding your reach by attending networking opportunities in your industry and local business communities?
8. Systemize bookkeeping, billing, and expense management.
- Do you have a certified bookkeeper taking care of your financial reports? Are you hands-on with reviewing and understanding the numbers thoroughly?
- Are all business-related receipts and bills properly organized and accounted for?
- Do you keep complete and accurate records for your tax statements?
- Do you have a system to ensure all incoming and outgoing bills are paid on time?
Different kinds of contractors have varying preferences on how they do their work, process information, prioritize tasks, and go about their day. A successful carpentry business owner continuously invests on knowledge, explores changing methods, and creates opportunities for growth in quality, productivity, and sustainable profit – all of which go hand in hand.
In a nutshell, it’s about finding that sweet spot – remember: a winning strategy consistently melds with your specific needs, goals and expertise. You already have the guts to be in this industry. Now, grab the tools and be the visionary of your own success.