At The Restoration Entrepreneur, we encourage lots of people to start restoration businesses. Carpet cleaners and plumbers are ideal candidates, as are roofers and even hardware store owners.
One of the most frequent concerns we hear is, “How can I run another business? This one already takes up all my time.”
In many ways, it’s easier to run several businesses than it is to run one. One business often can’t pay for the help you need to run it. With several businesses, you can afford to hire the help you need to keep everything going.
Get rid of the unnecessary
The first thing to do is decide that you want another business. You don’t have get too much further than that, right now. Just know that you really want another business.
Next, look at everything you do that someone else can do. Here are some suggestions:
- Answering phones and emails
- Estimates and billing
- New employee paperwork
- Human resources management
- Getting equipment repaired
- Delivering equipment and supplies
“But wait,” you say. “That’s most of what I do.”
Yes, right now it is. If you have two or more businesses all working from the same office, you don’t want to do those things. Hire people to take care of it for you.
None of that needs to be done by the boss.
So, what do I do?
If you give all that work to someone else, what will you do?
You will look for ways to continue to grow the business. For example, you’ll be the one who initially talks to prospective customers about working for them. You won’t promise a price or negotiate a contract. You’ll be the person who makes it clear that you’re going to see that it all happens.
You’ll build business connections. Your job is to look for business partners to send you business referrals. You’ll work with suppliers to get better prices. You’ll build your business’s strength while your crew makes you look good.
You’ll inspect jobs and encourage the team. You don’t need to discipline them. That will be someone else’s job, too. You’ll simply come through and let them know that you’re happy and see if they need anything.
Set a Schedule
While not everything will fall inside your schedule, you should try to have a schedule that’s predictable. You’ll want to work more hours than your staff. Arrive an hour before they do and leave an hour later but have a schedule for yourself.
Try to take weekends or at least have two days off each week. This sets a tone for your staff that you expect them to have a life as well.
Keeping the staff happy
Treat your staff in all your businesses like you wanted to be treated when you worked for someone else. Ask the how they are and make it clear to your foreperson and managers that you expect the staff to have what they need and to be treated well.
If your staff is happy, there’s much less chance that you’ll need to step in to fix things.
It’s important that you set wages so that everyone is being paid well. It’s much more expensive to train fresh staff than is to pay well-trained staff a decent wage.
Running multiple businesses can be easy if you plan and trust others. Stay tuned to this page for our blog on delegating well.