Measure Labour Productivity

This week I am borrowing a blog post from Grocorp.co in the US who produce an app to measure labour productivity on a construction project.  Whether you use technology like this or pencil and paper, the principles are the same.  What you can measure you can manage.  What you can manage you can change (for the…

Details

Longer Hours = Less Productivity

Research out of Stamford University earlier this year showed that productivity declines quickly after working for more than 50 hours per week and declines even faster after the 55 hour mark. I suspect that they just tested office workers in big companies, rather than owners of small businesses.  Long hours seem to come with the…

Details

A Problem Shared

This month I started another semi-group “coaching” program for 2015, called the Construction Business MasterClass, at my office in Albany. Participants are into the first “Your Foundations” diagnostic phase and already seeing the benefits of coming on-board. I knew from my experience that participants would receive tremendous value in the 3-way analysis that is conducted on…

Details

Emergency Cash Flow Triage

It’s Monday morning and you don’t have enough cash on hand to make Thursday’s payroll – What options do you have? Cash flow crunches affect every business. Ideally, you can weather these crises by accessing a line of credit or revolving loan you’ve already set up with your bank, or tapping into cash reserves you’ve put…

Details

Don’t Drop The Baton

Running a trade business (or any business for that matter) can be likened to running a 4 x 100m relay race.  When everything runs smoothly and the baton is passed from hand-to-hand seamlessly, it is a pleasure to behold.  Drop the baton at some critical stage and all the good work done to date is…

Details

Smash Out Office Work in 50:15 Sprints

Unlikely that you spend as much time as me in the office, but if you do and find it hard to stay focused on the task at hand, try this technique.  I call it 50:15 and it may help you become way more effective. Rather than trying to sit there for hours until the job…

Details

Marketing 101: Horse before Cart

I often see small companies approach their marketing on a random, suck-it-and-see approach, therefore waste a lot of money and time going nowhere.  They will try one channel, after being approached by a slick salesperson with a “deal”, put a quick campaign in place and more often than not, be disappointed by the results.  Thinking…

Details

Give Yourself a Test

The following is a cut down version of a post I read on a US website from George Hedley.  He is a business coach much like myself and focuses on the construction industry.  If you want to check him out his website is www.hardhatpresentations.com I like and agree with what he says and thought you…

Details

I’d Rather Juggle Chainsaws

Labour is biggest maker or breaker in project profitability in the construction industry. A 5% swing either way can cause a 50% swing in net profit.  This is particularly true for renovation projects, where the labour component typically represents a higher proportion of the total cost, compared to new builds.  The work is also more…

Details

Prevent Budget Blowouts

With the construction industry being pretty buoyant at the moment, attention should be turned to improving operational efficiency as the best way to increase profits. Last year I ran a couple of seminars based on the results of an industry survey on the frustrations builders have in project management.  It sparked some interest so I thought…

Details