You can make a few decisions in the next 10 minutes to cut your workday in half. When you do this, you won’t make any less money. You will just work less.
We are all making a certain amount of money, for a certain amount of time we put in. Our goal is to maximize the amount of money we make per hour we put in.
Most painting companies stop growing because the business owner gets so busy that they don’t have time to grow the business… They only have time to keep managing the business. This happens because they are not running their business, the business is running them!
Here are a few common pitfalls that painting business owners run into.
Problem: Getting supplies from the paint store. Every morning you head to the store to pick up supplies for the day. Half way thru the day, someone realizes that they need more tape. The business owner runs back to the store, picks up more tape, and brings it back to the job site. This could take 1 hour in the morning and another hour in the middle of the day. And it’s completely unnecessary.
Solution: Check inventory daily so that there is only one required trip to the paint store. Have your painters pick up all the supplies every morning. Give your foreman or crew chief a raise to do this. It might cost you an extra $10 per day. So if you choose to keep going to the store yourself, you are making $5/hour going to the paint store.
Problem: Doing test patches for clients. Customers pick the colors they want, and the business owner goes to the paint store, picks up the quarts, goes to the customers house, and puts samples up. This can take 2 hours just to do one sample.
Solution: We give our customers a code to the paint store so they can pick up the colors they want and put samples up on their house. We have no problems doing this with customers, but it has saved us literally hundreds of hours just this year… maybe thousands of hours.
Problem: Constantly checking in on the job site. You meet the painters in the morning. Then you go run a couple errands, and come check back at lunch. Then you check back again at the end of the day. This can add up to several hours per day.
Solution: Stop babysitting your employees and start empowering them to do their job. Give your foreman a small raise to start setting the daily goals. Give him another small raise to talk to the client every night. Give him a little more responsibility at a time, until he is running the entire job site from start to finish. You know you’ve succeeded at this when you never talk a customer once the job is started – the foreman even collects the final check.
It’s very easy to fall into the trap… You see, if you didn’t spend your whole day running errands, going to and from the paint store, stopping by job sites, putting samples on houses… What would you do all day?
You wouldn’t have much to do would you?
So then when your painter calls you, and says they ran out of paint and need more paint – your gut reaction is “I’ll get it” because you aren’t that busy.
But soon, that’s all you are doing – running around like a crazy person.
So what do you do with all this free time?
You make more money! Start a new crew. Focus on marketing. Focus on sales. Do more estimates. Imagine you could start another crew with that time. You could almost double your profit.. increasing the amount of money you make per hour.
Then the process starts over. Once you start expanding the business, doing estimates, and hiring new crews your schedule will start to get really busy again.
But this time, your schedule is full of estimates, marketing, and getting your new crew going. Back to step one… hire someone to do all the estimates for you, or hire someone to manage your crews, or hire someone to manage your marketing. You spend that extra time doing more of what makes you money.
Leave a comment – What things take up all of your time in your business and how could you remove those from your schedule to free up more time?