Written by Ari Greenbaum, co-founder of conXpros
How many hats do you wear? If you are like most small business owners the honest answer will likely be “too many to fit on my head”.
Our company, conXpros has not been in existence for a long period of time. In fact, we just celebrated our 2-year anniversary of when we enrolled our first home improvement contractor as a client. As a start-up small business, there are long lists of things needing to get done and as an owner & founder, there are often too many hats I find myself wearing. Operating a home improvement or home services business is challenging in itself, but getting weighed down by the multitude of hats we put on our head can be the difference between success and failure as a business. Learning how to remove some or many of these hats will allow you to focus on your strengths with laser precision. As a result, your business will thrive and prosper both in the short as well as long term.
Let’s first identify the many hats business owners in the home improvement space wear:
- Home improvement or home services contractor
- Business owner
- Sales-estimating & closing deals
- Appointment setting
- Customer service/satisfaction
- Reputation manager
- Website/social media coordination
- Project manager
- Recruiting & hiring
- Human resources
I may have missed an additional hat or two, but I am sure we can all agree that the list is already lengthy enough. I like to consider myself an excellent multi-tasker & someone who “gets stuff done”. However, no matter how much I try to impersonate a super hero, no one is capable of reaching the success they are capable of when spread so thin. In my younger days, I would have stood up to the challenge and believed I can handle the load. Fortunately, age and experience has brought me the wisdom to know better. I understand what my strengths are. I also understand my deficiencies. This understanding has been one of the key factors to growing our business at conXpros and achieving even greater things than we ever expected in such a short period of time.
So, why do so many business owners take on too much? Typically, it either relates to ego, or more commonly the feeling that they must do everything themselves to get it done right. Either of these hurdles can stand in the way of achieving success and greatness. The majority of home improvement pros are either great at one or both of the following: craftsmanship/workmanship & sales/customer care. Where did the idea come from that you are also an expert marketer? Or that you can effectively know all of the rules and procedures to manage employees? Or manage a web and social media presence like a beast? I can go on, but I am confident the picture has already become clear. Fortunately, we live and operate businesses in a time that there is an abundance of resources available that allow us to focus on what we do best and can have the greatest impact.
Outsource to promote explosive growth
Shedding hats is scary but can be very easy once the choice is made to address our deficiencies with softwares, services, & consultants that are far more skilled and experienced than we are. If you are not an HR & payroll expert, there are HR softwares, management companies, and PEO’s available to take that burden off your plate. Not a great recruiter, no problem. There are tons of recruitment options out there to help find the right talent to grow your team. Marketing making your head spin, find an expert that has a history of excellent results to engage on your behalf or a lead generation company to deliver the clients to you. Of course, there is the option to hire individuals for each of these roles. But bringing people into your company to achieve these tasks is a roll of the dice. Can you be certain that the new hire will in fact spearhead effective marketing campaigns? So why not limit the risk and maximize the opportunity for success? Outsourcing can be the solution that allows you to take some of the burden off your own shoulders by engaging with expert level options that are available to anyone. You might be thinking, “that could get expensive”. On the surface, you are correct. However, when you start to calculate the cost of a bad internal hire in a critical role, or the “cost” of your time trying to do it yourself, the “expense” often becomes a savings.
As a company, myself and my co-founder know what we do well. We know that our expertise is providing an exceptional customer experience. By outsourcing various aspects of our business & operations, we have been able to spend more time and energy doing what we excel at. This is the recommendation I make to any small business owner that finds themselves trying to be a Swiss army knife and wearing too many hats. Remove that weight by finding the right outsourced options for your business. Once you do this, you can focus on what you do best; providing exceptional workmanship and care for your clients, as well as growing your company through the acquisition of new clients. Just like there are many tools needed to properly perform a home improvement project, we need a full tool box to accomplish greatness as a business owner.
Don’t allow ego or reluctance to let others help get in the way of your success. Think of how much more you could accomplish if you were able to remove the hours and stress of trying to do it all. Think of how many more clients you can offer your outstanding services to. Think about how much more profitable your business will become by having expertise going to work for you in every aspect of your business. Take some of those hats off and leave them on the hat rack. Focus on what you do best and your business will soon be booming.