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More stories about Business

  • Quality, Schedule, Price: Pick Two

    All clients come to the table with a set of unspoken expectations, some of which they may not even be aware of. Because these assumptions will inform every decision they make, it's important to bring them into the open and prioritize them early on. This will help you decide whether you and the...

  • Putting a Purchase-Order System in Place

    As a financial consultant to small construction companies, I've seen lots of cases where a builder finished a job and the bookkeeper closed the books on it — only to have a late subcontractor bill for that job show up months later.

  • The True Cost of Labor

    The true cost of labor

  • Give Your Customers Some Credit

    Give your customers some credit

  • Profiting From Allowances

    I don't much like allowances, which let homeowners postpone decisions that really should be made before the project even breaks ground.

  • Looking Back at Job Leads

    Our remodeling company has been using lead sheets — simple printed forms on which we record information about potential clients who call our office — for several years now.

  • Straight Talk About Fraud

    In 2006, occupational fraud cost U.S. businesses about $600 billion, or roughly $4,500 per employee, according to the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. Building contractors rank second in the list of targets, after retail stores.

  • Are You Spending Your Time Profitably?

    Are you spending your time profitably?; four-day workweek pays off

  • Save Time With a Lead Sheet

    The first estimate my company ever produced was for a basement remodel. I spent an hour driving back and forth to the prospective client's house, two hours talking to her, and then several more hours doing a detailed estimate.

  • Communicating With Customers Through the Web

    Most conflicts between a service business and its customers can be avoided with good communication.