The Simple Cure to an Insidious Disease that’s Hurting Your Business
August 18, 2016
I don’t want to alarm you (ok, maybe I do!) but there’s a disease in most contracting businesses which, left untreated, will cause your business to hemorrhage money and time. And from my experience with many contractors, this disease has reached epidemic proportions.
Fortunately, there is a cure and I’m going to write you a prescription for it in a minute. But first, a little background on the disease.
The disease that I’m referring to didn’t have a name so I’m calling it “Improvementus Interruptus.” In laymen’s language (for those of you who aren’t doctors and don’t speak pig Latin), “Improvementus Interruptus” is the failure to follow through on new initiatives or on new processes, procedures or policies until they are adopted completely by everyone in your business.
Here are the symptoms that you need to watch for:
- You identify an area needing improvement in your business such as poor hand-offs of sold jobs between sales and operations or not having everything needed to start a job, or an unacceptably high level of call backs on “completed” jobs.
- You analyze the situation, create a new procedure and implement it by training your team and telling them that this new procedure must be used forevermore.
- The procedure seems to work great and you claim “Mission accomplished!” and move on to improve another area of your business.
- Slowly, silently and insidiously over the next few months, the procedure disappears and things go back to the way they were before.
- A year later, you’re meeting with your team to identify areas that need to be improved and the same issues come up again. Someone on your team says, “Didn’t we have a procedure for that? I wonder what happened to it.”
- And the cycle starts again!
Do these symptoms sound familiar? If so, your business is probably infected with a case of “Improvementus Interruptus.” I have seen these same symptoms in dozens of companies. In fact, it’s gotten so bad that I had to alert the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta. Sorry, they still don’t know how it spreads.
The damage resulting from Improvementus Interruptus” happens gradually, but if left untreated, it can:
- Cause money to hemorrhage from your business, resulting from the ongoing problems that you never completely fixed draining your sales and profits and also from the wasted time and money that you and your team had devoted to attempting to fix these problems.
- Make your team resistant to future changes. Making changes is hard for many people and if your team knows that your business has “Improvementus Interruptus” they will drag their feet on future improvement attempts, knowing that shortly “this one too will pass.”
Fortunately, there is a simple cure for “Improvementus Interruptus.” Here’s the prescription:
- Keep a list of all of the improvements that you’re implementing in your business.
- Once a month (or more frequently for new improvements) follow up on each one to ensure that each is still being implemented, followed as they were designed and working the way you intended.
- If yes, great!
- If no, take corrective action.
- For each improvement repeat for 12 months and then quarterly* after that until the improvement is fully adopted. *Warning: Follow this prescription to completion. Cutting the prescription short could lead to a relapse!
Join Me in the Fight Against “Improvementus Interruptus!”
If you follow the prescription completely, your team will follow through with implementing improvement ideas because they know that you care enough to consistently follow up, your business results will improve and your business will run more smoothly as a result. And you’ll never need to worry about “Improvementus Interruptus” again.
Let’s wipe out this disease once and for all!
Connect with us today to schedule a time to talk.
Here’s How We’ve Helped Other Businesses.
Since working with Bill we have gone from losing money to a 6-figure profit and our business has grown more than 20%. It’s incredible. Working with Bill has been a great investment.
Bill’s tools and techniques reduced the struggle and helped me get and retain new customers. While working with Bill, my sales increased 40%, even though the price wars were brutal.
Bill’s constant guidance and insight has helped us make decisions that were instrumental in greatly improving our business and making us happier more fulfilled people.
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