The post-pandemic world is uncertain, but the one thing we know is that times will be tough for a while still. If you’re worried about what the future holds for your business, you’re not alone.
However, the good news is that with every market shake-up, there’s an opportunity. In this article, we cover things concrete contractors like yourself can do to get ahead of the game.
These are some good ways to take advantage of every opportunity.
We take a look at how you can show yourself to your best advantage with customers. There’s advice on how to keep everyone safe. And how to make smart business choices that will have you operating efficiently and reduce risk.
Read on to find out how to pandemic-proof your concreting business.
Tip 1. Be a Peacock
If you think of how a peacock attracts his peahen, he showcases his best assets. He goes big: Look at how great I am!
Clients shouldn’t have to chase you for your credentials. Make it easy for prospective clients to close with you by taking the following steps;
- Provide your team’s qualifications upfront. Clients want to know who they’re entrusting with their property. They want a contractor who is properly trained and certified.
- Display your affiliations to any professional bodies. Likewise, for any community organizations. It offers people comfort if they know they have recourse to a “higher power.” And memberships can indicate you play by the rules. Being part of an organization says you can get along with people.
- Ask for testimonials from happy past clients. Request that people review you on sites like Yelp, Facebook, Google, and Angie’s List. People are going to the internet more and more for reviews of services they are considering. So, it is also critical that you respond immediately to negative reviews.
- Ensure you and your employees look neat and tidy. Your branded vehicles and equipment should also always appear cared for and clean. Think peacock!
- Provide value in each encounter. Educating your clients will leave a very good impression as well as building their confidence on your craft. Assure them of the accountability you put in each project, just as how you take insuring your business and their property seriously in case something happens during and after the project.
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Tip 2. Be Safe
Your safety protocols are also something you should make available to prospective clients. Always ensure your team is observant and respectful of their own and the client’s safety.
COVID has placed an additional burden of safety on contractors. But it’s in everyone’s interest to get through this period with as few fatalities as possible. It’s too easy to get caught in a spiral of despair. Change your mindset and try to think of the new protocols as an opportunity. See it as a chance to demonstrate your professional diligence. And the care you have for your staff and clients.
Tip 3. Stick to Your Knitting
The concrete industry covers a vast number of focus areas. It can be tempting in tough times to try to be all things to all people. This never works.
Don’t fall into the trap of spreading yourself too thin. Or taking on working you’re not adequately skilled for. It can damage your reputation irredeemably and isn’t a cost-efficient way of working.
Instead, use downtime to skill yourself up on the latest developments. Make contact with suppliers to see what’s new. When was the last time you had time to read a trade magazine or contribute to an online forum conversation?
Establish yourself as an expert in your niche by strengthening and sharing your knowledge. You can find a listing of reputable contractor forums.
Develop a referral network of other contractors with complementary skills. Give people comfort that you don’t compete with them. They will be happy to recommend you for work they don’t do themselves. That way, everybody gets a piece of the pie.
Tip 4. Mitigate Risk
Use pandemic downtime to get your admin in order. Specifically, make an appointment with your insurance broker. Review your policies and ensure you’re adequately and appropriately covered. Are there COVID-related risks that leave you exposed, perhaps?
Standard insurance requirements that are normally secured by concrete contractors include:
- liability insurance
- commercial property insurance,
- business auto, and
- workers compensation.
It’s essential for new and small contractors to provide prospective clients with proof of adequate liability cover. Liability insurance pays damages if you’re sued for damage to property or people. It protects your business and you personally. But it also provides peace of mind to your clients.
Insurance allows you to hold your own: clients feel safe giving you a chance. This is one of the best ways insurance policies help you to get ahead.
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Tip 5. Embrace Technology
Smart devices and cloud-based technology are revolutionizing the construction industry. Contractor management apps allow you to track project progress and remotely manage your workforce. They will help you prepare professional quotations, communicate with clients, and handle billing and payments.
Good contractor software can take just a small investment of time and money. (Some excellent contractor apps are even available for free). In return, you could reap significant efficiencies and drastically improve your management practice.
The pandemic has fast-tracked many industries into digital work mode. Those businesses that are thriving are the ones that were already set up. If you haven’t already gone cloud-based, use pandemic downtime to make the switch.
Top Tip: Take Action. Now.
To be ahead of the game requires action. Embrace the downtime forced on you by COVID to look critically at your business. Apply these 5 tips to strengthen your concrete contracting business.
These are just some of the ways to be ahead of your game, and it’s never too late to advance and learn… These tips can jumpstart your business in no time!