Can you imagine getting discouraged owning your own business? Difficulties hiring (and keeping) good people, challenges of fighting to get paid timely for your work, and ever-escalating paperwork requirements from the government. And I could keep on going.
Let’s add in a few more: trying to make payroll, fighting with ignorant (or greedy) customers, arguing with some unskilled desk adjuster, making sure ALL the equipment is returned from the job… and hoping your “marketer” does what they are supposed to do – sell.
You absolutely know what it’s like, the weight of:
- Insurance premium increases
- Cash-flow management and payroll
- Not being where you thought you would be at this point in your business or life
- Trying to give people great opportunities, but they don’t seem to appreciate it
- People you know you need to fire, but you just let them hang around
- Knowing your company isn’t perfect
- People letting you down
- You letting yourself down
- Seeing other people’s businesses and believing they have it easier than you
- And on and on and on it goes…
OK, I’ve painted the picture. Based on my discussions over the past several months with dozens and dozens of contractors from all types of service companies, the pains I described probably fit almost every company.
Many of these contractors tell me they have major headaches constantly fighting for more business and more profit, yet they fail to do one of the most important parts of ownership; be actively engaged in the business during these challenging periods of difficulty. So many times, they (owners) try to drown away the pains by going on vacation with the family, or they buy motor homes, boats, motorcycles, etc. In the extreme, while their business is fighting for its life, they even buy new homes or add expensive features to their homes.
It’s rather like the person that’s down and discouraged and goes on an eating binge. Then complain they are gaining weight. Difficult times call for a laser focus on getting up and out of the issues you currently have in your business.
When times are extremely challenging – as they are right now for many in the restoration industry due to the short staff and insurance adjuster Delay, Deny, Defend strategy, it’s more important than ever to buckle down and dive back in… (and I don’t mean your swimming pool).
It’s no secret today – with low unemployment – those employees are constantly looking to improve their own livelihood. With basic HVAC technicians getting almost $40/hr. now, and electrician getting more than $50/hr., it’s silly to think you can hire a basic water damage technician for $15/hr. They can go to Mcdonald’s and make that. As I’ve predicted in previous recent articles and posts, it’s coming VERY SOON when starting pay for a restoration technician will be $25-30 per hour. (And in some areas of the country it has already arrived).
Enough said about wages… it’s only a small part of what you are dealing with. Reality must include not buying into the lies. Business gurus make it seem so easy. Buy their management course, their self-help DVDs, or their book and you will have a lot of money and freedom. Ever bought into that lie? Did you think owning a business would be easier? Well, that’s just a lie. Identify the lie you are believing, and you will crush some of that discouragement. The lie that high-pressure salespeople sell you is really killing your spirit.
If you think “just checking out” will make the issues go away, you are going to be bankrupt before you know it! Don’t stick your head in the sand. Sand in your eyes can be quite painful.
Your discouragement isn’t just discouragement. It’s a symptom of something deeper going on. If you want to create a healthy business, you can’t live mad all the time. You can’t be frustrated 24/7. Refocus on getting personally involved in several key aspects of your business and you’ll see a vast improvement. I believe it will help you beat your discouragement and get back on the growth track.
And one last thought: please don’t step over dollars to pick up pennies! That’s ultimately fatal.
Author: Dick Wagner, AskDickWagner.com
Nationally recognized restoration sales coach, speaker, and consultant