45 min read
Watch Fergus founder, Dan Pollard, share his story of how his 19 person plumbing business got through the 2011 recession by developing new...
Watch this webinar to learn how you can structure your trades business for success
Next to me is Andy Smith. Hi, guys. How you doing. This is sweet notes about how to structure your business for six weeks and we're looking forward to sharing some insights and practical advice for you tonight. Before we begin, just a couple of housekeeping orders the women on tonight's approximately 60 minutes long. And we're recording this session. And it will be made available for to watch a game like that, you will once have been needed although it will be time for questions and answers after the presentation. Feel free to go ahead and talk your questions into the patient panel, we see on the screen, and we'll do our best to get to those at the end of the presentation. We've also got a couple of our first team members moderating. We've been on. So if at any time you have any technical difficulties. Please talk to the Czechs and they'll do their best to help you sort it. Right sorry. Just as a disclaimer there's lots of places running a business and all kinds of what you want personally. So this is disclaimer. But you know, I had some thoughts on how they work before we jump into it though or just talk for a few minutes about myself. And then any meaningful consumers himself. So it's like I've been a plumber since I was 17. And I started work myself when I was 22 the whole time I was 24. I was out of business in a couple of years, I've done had three staff, but I didn't pay any taxes. And I had a 60 grand tax bill to pay. So back in 1997 that was there was a lot of money, I had to go on. Brendan Nelson had to go hunting for a year in the playoffs tax bill. So that was a you know it was a that visit didn't work out. The game was between seven and a couple of guys again in a close game was 29. And once again, they're not money issues. But just the stress of quoting invoicing cash. Why customers stop jobs by play. It just got too much. And so I stopped working again, because the stress of it. And so between train on serious euro off this. I'm traveling. When I came back, I was like, man, I've got to get this to work on. I'm 30 now. And eventually still had no money after 13 years. And so I've done some reading in Europe. And so the last is that we could go up to 25 stop and two branches in the plumbing company and sublet some stuff out and also met Thomas on Fergus software, which is now 40 old stuff. And we've got 10 12,000 customers sort around the world that's going to really go celebrate a few things. So decisions about what I meant and plumbing and software. So that's my duty. So now we're talking about it. Hi, guys. I'm Andy Smith. Nice to have you on line today. So I started as a plumber as well. My very first plumber plumbing business was called Andrew Smith plumbing. Yes Very, very original. We decided to travel with my wife now. I ran a strike for 13 months headed overseas for about another 15 months. I came back to Sydney and we had some property booms. A lot of things have been happening along the way. I feel really behind the eight ball in regards to buying property. And so forth at the age of 23, 24. We started the business stopped a drip and we decided we're going to be mainly maintenance we'd done a lot of construction in the past. We went down the maintenance rats and we grew very, very quickly. And before you knew it here in Sydney we had had businesses called Doctor tradesmen. We grind to a team of 17. So in the maintenance space that was a lot of work that needed to come through the door constantly a lot of money spent on marketing inside. So to learn a lot of lessons. We went from making a lot of money along the way to all of a sudden hemorrhaging money and the Capital One day to me and said, what is going on. You went from here to crashing and burning and it was a lot of things that happen all along the way because of that. But the one thing that really changed my life forever was my beautiful wife with my daughter at the time she came to me and said, I've had enough. I'm gone. You know you leave at 5:00 in the morning, you get home and at 11:00 at night, even when you are around the fines attached to your head. She said, I just don't want this life to be like that. So it was a turning point for us to go where we needed a better wife. So we restructured the business changed the law ran it about two years, we won some big awards. No one tried this gone astray. And then we've gone out and we built a business called lifestyle trading, which teaches trade business owners in Australia and around the world. How to run a better successful streamlined business. And we've been doing that for 10 years. So that's a little bit of a snapshot of what we did. This is all familiar to you guys. We'll be there. So we'll talk a bit about that. So the fishbowl is going to talk about. What do I define as a successful business intervention to see if you sort of agree. So for me, this is what a successful business looks like. It's a business where you're making a profit of 10% or above. But you're only working 10 hours a week if you want to. That means it can work without you. It's also one where you've got a separate business premises. That's not a safe place to own it works for. You also have enough of the stuff you need to work 10 to 15 hours a week. But also, most importantly, you've got enough cash flow that you can pay all your bills on time and be paid on time. So if you've got less elements for me, it's a successful business. There's no doubt everything you said, they are 100% agree with. I think to add onto that when you've got a big business that runs like that you normally have a happy home where you can have a happy home as well. And a lot of that stress has gone away. You know what we take cheese exactly that's an end to have a business that doesn't need to run with that at you. But like us all we all like working like that. You like working in your terms. Normally the stress and the dramas that we both had in the past and the same. So working from home and apartment that does the books and making good profit is totally right. It's a totally legit life. The issue you face to face is when you're getting around 50 plus the body is going to get a right out of a scene. Are you going to be carrying a knee or back over a shoulder injury. It's going to be quite restricting to keep working at the same table to get the cash right. Told me that before you're 50. You've all got to be invested in property is all you've got to go and become a sales rep at a bit of supply right or a conference that you want to, you want a lot. We say safe you had to set up that rock why do you want to be able to sell you these. Look around. Not many try to get that opportunity to sell the businesses. As it is work. That's that if it's done that recently. But that's what we need. And that's what this is about. Really you've got to be preparing for the day to sell your business when you don't want to work on its what. Woody Allen was appointed right. So the best thing to be saying is capitalize on your technical expertise as trainee and add on the disciplines of the business. We've all done the apprenticeship of learning a trade with two or three years under gentlemen's and women's. But how many of us have a ton of business shit right. Taking the time to learn about business, because it is a science, which in this 12-year-old is if you go to university for 10 years, and ended up as a student marketing branding staff. I know there's not a single bit of mystery left in business just that you mentioned University. The one thing I've really noticed is most people do want to be a doctor or a university, they maintain ease and made up to 100 brains, we have much trainees. I spend all their money on the new trucks and the Nationals and saying, teach himself how to be business science, which is pretty easy. And so this is reason why he's in this field. And so on sort going to go ahead QuickBooks software eyesight better to you use like Fergus job management and zero management. And he's like that you name it. And try to teach you how to use his tools properly because like when in the big tool in the toolbox if you don't use it properly. And so you need the two parts of the offer to give that which is like a tone and then he's like a coach to help you learn to get the right tools and to think you can do what they have to help. It's like sitting in a prison cell and type one on the van. So you working on your own. The old person might think most of us don't enter that analogy actually because we have a lot of people that are just working at three or five years. He needs 20 years. I still have him with that. I lost because he's sitting struggling inside it all as well. You know, when my business has gone from strength to strength no one could tell me what to do until it's crashing and burning and start reconsidering that. So that's what I want to get out. We've been through the struggle. And it's this time to sort out the trouble. What do you have to learn. You've got to you've got to pay for advice and get advice and to do your apprenticeship in business. So the other one is we'll see what this is like. The bet was going to be a little bit of maybe a little bit challenging. Look it's possible. You can run a business a different way. But it's not probable. So I've got thousands of businesses consultant talk to 100 them. And every business that been coached in trying to the assassins over the last 10 years. And so the lessons we're teaching are actually quite universal like there's only certain ways to run a business and make it successful. Yes it's possible. We might get a hit a different way. But it's actually not probable. So some of the stuff we say might want to hear it. But it's actually a hard choice and it's been hard won by thousands of other trades before us and ourselves to get to these points. So with that in mind. We'll sort of get through into the next best and go through this at best. All right. Right So I wanted to talk about was for me agents like you have business just more talking to companies. It's a team really the only thing to me that matters is that cash flow and profit health and safety brain marketing all that is the most critical but what's that. Cash flow and profit. You have nothing. Once you have the cash flow and profit isn't working, then you can build upon everything else. So the business from day, one has to learn how to code its cash but also how to make profit because as I point being idealist money and you can't pay your bills was my point making with this money. My cash on paper. I see the cash flow and profit. Well, what I can say to me at one stage it ain't you making massive profit. But there's plenty of businesses that have bigger and better than mules that have gone basket. Pull cash flow. And that was a problem actually really quickly. Always very much at all. I owed more tracks more guys more trucks. No guys on that. I wasn't really watching the cash flow in the numbers correctly. And that's why I started to question. Yeah, this thing with my cash was a problem. So what I said, what I did in the food business. And this is jump on my penis. I did it. This is I want the ability to end every guy. That's why this my business. The food business. I was successful. Now not to be candid with you, but it's a great job. I want the ability to invoice every day. So that means I want that my materials and every guy on the jobs. So means when I come to my payroll. It's sort of the spending all day timesheets and job cuts cash want to work there. So in order to make that happen more like that even from one person. I had a office person from day one. A lady could lean and she was just going to three hours a day two or three days a week. It was just me. I still to someone in every day not every day. Why that office resources. So that the materials and descriptions and phone calls answered every single day from day one. And so that will be my go and rule no matter what size you are. You need an office person to help you out. Yeah, I agree. I think that as a trainee we try and way too many hats and we just can't do everything. So I think you do need a hand. Even from day one with myself week we outsource the book. But now more than an average will keep it a lot more for me. But that guy that gave us the chance to grow and to put a lot of things in place because as a trainee you need the money coming through the door. What's it going to be work. Hasan yes how much time in a guy you made a little bit of a hanging in the office. I'm quoting and embellishing you doing all that stuff. There's another couple of points. Well, I like to speak a lot. One is I'm not a great fan of partners working in the business. On this. I really, really wants you most that's one the partners there to help you out. And then I actually want to be there. But I don't like seeing you stressed in you know just like under the consulate trying to help you out. But they I get sucked into all the drama of the business. And that's not happy either. And so I think it's healthy for the relationship to try and keep the partner sort of and you focus on the relationship not on the work. The exception to that is I absolutely don't think you should ever hand over paying bills to someone else's family like big UPS employee accounts people paying them actually exes to get some paying money to provide you with a partner that's fearless. Yeah And I agree with that. I think a lot of the times that a partner is dragged into the business and they don't want to be. We have quite a few people that partners in the business. And they can I can get on. Well But they got strict tasks of what they do, and they're working on things I want to work on not what you'll tell them to work on. And when you have the wife in the business trying to organize the office and you're adding and the tools. There's too much conflict that she wanted to set and why you're pushing back because you're so close. It's a bit you know there's a bit of conflict over the ease of marriage canceling many times in between that cause I'll say it from both sides and assist about juggling it to do right. Yeah And so I'm not saying I'm not on this. I'm really we want to. But as you see, it's like those specific things I want to do. It's a different matter. But not forcing them. But the second big thing is if you're going to learn to build a business that works with what you see working 10 hours a week. The business has to learn about employing people from day one. You have to learn to say that's not expense that they're an exec that they allow you to be more productive and more profitable and you have to stop less disciplines from day one because it's a bit of a skill to learn to build systems and processes in place. So you know what you've been doing and to keep it. Keep an eye on it. But she stuff from day one if there's not a 40 hour job. It's only two or three hours a day two or three days a week and you get busier and for more people as allies go up. So I don't think it's a full time commitment there's plenty of people that part time work. The problem with most people that always they look and think I don't have the money to employ someone and I believe that. But that all comes down to structuring your business the right way making sure you're making a lot of profit and doing it because once you have that person in they will make that income. That's going to help double, triple that. So that's a bit of a mindset thing to try to ease and we tend to we attack business. And we want to build everything. And we feel like, no one can help us. But sometimes we don't go with that. So sometimes the guy can't make it if you think about all the office business. There was Mexican life put the vehicle charge fixings charge miss charge maybe invoice and they'll soon cover the area. You're right. But the most important thing is what that person does is they value the ability to invoice you guys because like Maxwell the five materials are on the jobs. So they create the draft invoice when you sit down at night, you're just reviewing and steaming off. So all those people with the money. Right next question. Right operational excellence leads to financial excellence. Right what does that mean. So we'll this point is non-negotiable to boys. You are not going to make good money. What kind of successful business until your operational side is working really well. So what does that mean. So the operational side is what is the systems a new business that allows you to run efficiently and because efficiency leads to profits. Obviously So the more efficiently. You can do the task the quicker you can do it, and the more profit going to bite. So the most critical elements for tried business the two non-negotiable a job management package, which is something like that's right. Fergus runs to a jobs requiring invoicing schemes much rights management and you need to fund Native management to 1 0. So that's running, you will just tell you payables receivables. No system does both. And anyone that says it does it's not possible. Very different disciplines. And so you must get to we zero. It's the best accounting platform by far. We've tried businesses and OCR means every client started. What do you think about the two tools you need a kind of a. I think once you can get a software program like this in place. And then you can have the camping site that works with that zero site that works with a whole business, some of the biggest fundamentals that I really seen on this site. If thought I understand numbers you understand what's coming in h wait h mark h bought out and you really need to know that if you run out a now and you're hitting the same. Now your numbers. And I urge you really fix that. And so what you do is you make a decision at the end of this week, you sign up for Fergus NO and you sign for lifestyle trading because there's no point having the based tools accounting, then putting in the training, the training kind of business behind it. Right So please do the end sign up for the opposite of that at the end because I think the frustration we might talk about at the fool that we see is businesses that are running ad hoc systems because they're trying to save costs. So I see people running trying to run a Google Calendar they're trying to run a timesheet system they're trying to run an Excel spreadsheet for quoting I got a Microsoft Word document and they've got all these separate packages to try and save a bit of money and I'm like, this is 40 bucks a month page basement. It's like half an hour a day. That's all you need in the month to pay for the time and efficiency you're leaving It's what blows my mind. Because how can you grow the business if you haven't got correct systems from the start. It's just impossible. It's the single biggest block describing to allow to growth business. What do you do when you saw that there's no two ways about it. And there's a lot of people I've come across these days. And some have a job managing a platform and some guy that anyone that's got one I'd like to serves me right. Why you'd never go back to that type work in that method. You know once you've got it. But I'm actually using it correctly use it to its full potential. And you will never look back. And I think this is a wonderful product. And we use it right. It'll save you. OK The talk. I get a hell of a lot of money. Now we're coming up in the mission critical category. Right So what we've done We'd say I'll set the foundations in stages. First off if you need people all those people right. That's a fundamental thing to grow, not the strike people off office resources. The second one is you need an operational to focus since you're right. So those are foundations. But if you're going to grow and what's the peak what's the seed of secret 60s to actually going now. How do you get from 1 to 17 or 20. How is it done. What's this. What's the secret and issue the secret is actually this. It's this little sign inside. You've put what you've seen. But you don't have the right to spend someone's money without the permission. Right So what that means is you have to start learning to quite what estimate every job because if you want to be good Castro how do you do that. The best way to get cash flow is to mix with the customer. And why will that kiting. Because I knew what they were going to expect. So you had to learn two words two words. But let's get these tattooed on your forearm. I call it the tube was ever anybody since you get this good managing expectations right. You have to manage the expectation of your customers and your staff. What was the customer experience and what was the quality of the outcome they're expecting. On what frame. Because as soon as you deliver the job on time. It cost they know. But just to think you can tune up new things and charge up and notice paying the bill. You're never going to grow a spine business as cash flow. With that thinking you have to start telling the homeowners what things they're going to cost upfront. Now things can change. But variations happen. But you have to keep letting them know all the time. What's happening at the cost side. Because there's a customer knows. Then they're more likely to pay you at the end of the job trying to give them a bill for what two grand for grand estimates. The second 7 4 will decline. Yeah, 100% agree. And listen, you've only got to be watching TV these days and watching House rules and all that sort of shows that are out there. And that can do a completely bathroom innovation in about four hours. And they can build a house in about a day. And people aren't ad in the public. They just don't know. So they expect things are going to take less time. So for us, we always give an estimate at about upfront. We make sure that they understand what that ease we get them to sign off on it. So at the end of the job. There's no hidden surprises. You know you got to marry down the road and you say, I'm going to be still at the partner of vanity and sheen hate because Billy bump crack handy man down the road. And I could do that for $100. You charge $400 and you're the worst in the world. So you need to make sure that the customers are aware of what needs to happen. And if you can do that from the start. If there is an objection you can deal with it then and there and explain it later on. It turns into a bit of a fight. I mean, if a chap to you. You're in trouble because you couldn't remember when I 20 point staff wage was 30 plus you got bills to pay and you know what was going on. So every week we had to have 50 grand to wait 10 grand to dine dropping into the business like $10,000 a day. But to come in. I mean, it's actually, that was a success to the mind and what's actually going on built. And so the only way to build. This is we must have happy customers that right. Right because when you're turning over that much money, you cannot afford to not eat for weeks and weeks because you can't keep going to the bank and another quarter million. So the figure is right. So therefore, we have to learn to deliver the solutions to the customers that we're having into the job. So that we quoting upfront getting deposits talking about the price minute. We don't want to get paid following that we're happy new invoice going invoices and making sure it overpaid. And so it all stops at the start, which is telling the customer what it's going to cost. Getting that agreement and going from there. Now Australia's a little bit different. So it's going to end up with the ending because in New Zealand, you can possibly find these things we see in Sydney it's so cold out you can't process what finally, you can obviously do that. But the thing we'd ask is when people are asking for a price either the find their price shopping done. In our business hearing in Sydney doctor. Were not the cheapest plumber. So if someone doing our price shopping and we set price out of the fine. We'll never, ever get that job because I'll find someone along the path that'll be cheaper. So we need to get the price, out of the fine. The way, do it. We charge for quoting we charge a $55 fleet. We go back to the job. If they go ahead with the job the coal face. Why that is great. So he went out with little funds to do that. I hear the freebie I got. It's not costing me anything. But once he there. It's all about communications talking with the customer. Building a relationship and deliver their product and making him understand their problem and making them understand that you are the professional, you are here to fix the job and you're going to keep the best solution. Once you do that. And you give them a price and you explain why in a situation if they know if they trust you and feel like you're going to do the right job. And that's what they need, that go ahead on the spot you sign on the spot you do the job and you collect the money on the spot. That's what not everyone does that in Sydney. But wait that's the way we do it. We take a lot of our trainees had to do it that way as well. Good point. Took the liberty off the excess. It's a lot of the same. So when you told me about staff you know if you want a growing business you mentioned earlier you obviously need cash flow you need money to be doing that you need to make sure you don't have too much outstanding along the way. You need a good team too. And I know in New Zealand and here in Australia, it's hard to get good training. But I mean, how do you get them. Well, firstly you got to pay them well. So you need to make sure your company is making good profit to get a paid good staff. The good money. Otherwise, I'll look for someone else. But then it's about training them to follow systems and structures. And that's what we do because then that Libby jail time they go in the office, then just have to spend countless hours doing all kinds of stuff that maybe they shouldn't have done. The guy in the field has done that. And we've all got a structure or a system for everything we do. Everyone knows that as long as the system is followed nothing goes wrong. Everything goes to plan. The money comes in quick and it's a good position for a business to keep scaling. I don't think so. It's kind of whelming Mike between systems and prices. But how do we get there. I might sound a bit overwhelming. But you don't employ 10 people overnight. You employ one guy. And in a few months guys another go. And so you can lie the systems up quite a bit. But at any time like these people are getting nervous scared. How do you keep us going. That's when you go. And so you keep coaching and helping him out because if you think about it, it's going to cost you a few thousand maybe a bit more. Right But how much looting and noise you going to shortcut by trying to get the systems and prices up from somebody is made for you. Yeah And what you're saying there is I think there is a perception that some people out a no doubt have grown and we get to a level limits forced off with Cliff stoppers about a little leg up to a million dollars that people can grow to that. And then they collapse and fall down. They grow to that and they got oh my god it's not worth growing a business. I can't do it. I'm just going to go so far as making more money when I was doing it myself. And that is because your business was never set up right the first time. Take to counter with the growth and the structure and systems. There's a bit of doing business. But business isn't easy. And I think we all Nate we all know business isn't easy. It's about following in small steps along the way. It's going to make a big difference difference want the numbers. So the that last point getting the teams up is probably the hardest. No question. It's growing because there's not enough turnover or profit to employ two or three full time staff and a 25 staff business was actually past 15. Super easy was actually great. All the risky don't you make this money. I don't believe it. 25 staff amorphous right. We had about four or five nearly full time office staff that did everything. It was amazing. Very profitable. And in great fun. Yes stressful. So it's different stress the stresses you just got to make sure the systems and processes are always followed. So the cash keeps coming in. But not getting with of ice streets of customers and staff and vehicles and all that just that the like Ron can where you are you're dealing with a high level strategic things to make sure the business is following the prices as you put in place. And this actually is actually quite fun quite rewarding. Would you agree. Oh same. Once you have a team along the way. It certainly helped you. I mean, you can leverage in the right way and get the team to help you out. Wearing a hat and doing that all the time. That's the brawn you're at tools all day. You coming home and night. If you've got a family. You're coming back to the family. You want to spend time with the family. Then after that, it's I need some downtime in the office to 11 o'clock at night and just start over and over again. You that random running wheel thinking, why do I even stop this. I wanted it to have a life. And I don't have a lot yet to be free is going to be two or three years of trying to get into that. And there's no getting away if you want to get to that 18. It's guys like you two or three years of hard up right. And it's as long as the economy is in there. What we've got most and it's in the contractions. So it's going to be hard to expand your business for the next year. It's two years until this mini recitation passport box is two or three years of hard times. There's no getting away from that. So this next topic is about numbers right. You need to get this all the time. So what are they. So once again, this Asian stage of the business. And this is a target on the team. It is a mission for the most important thing for me is always cash and profit will help. You got nothing. Right So for me, I have three numbers that I'm always watching. So the first number is chargeable Alice. So for every 100 Alice you pay you guys how many hours they actually have to charge with the customers. So we had a target of 92 hours. So 92 percent efficient. Most companies are around 78% And so that's the first big lake in your business. That's why for every 100 I was working already severe. I was being charged a lot of it is actually twice been traveling around just picking up materials in the morning and just getting stuck in traffic, which just depends on what kind of the workshop is. It's just dumped on the place. That's the first big one that you want to measure. The second one is your marginal material. Let's say if you're buying $1,000 with materials. How much are you charging for. I have a minimum margin of 40% on average across the board. I will make sure I'm charging at $1,400 right. I want to make sure all that listening know if my quotes from doubling on my quotes on the charging of my retail jobs. So my second one is margin on materials. Make sure I'm getting 40% And what's the big one is my average day dies days. So what we the project we started, I think everybody dies with 78 days to get 70 and it took a bit of three or four months. Was this consistent with we've got 28 days on average, let's just say this is actually invoicing on time and following the invoice and having payment plans. I mean, the code and the pulse hollow Hollywood went into that. But once that business means to do that, then that's when it's got actually quite amazing. And what we can do, or Yeah, I think especially in that construction sort of game, you need to have that work lined up in a night sky, and it can be hit and miss sometimes you find running hot you can wait lined up. Sometimes you get work. And by the day you know. So for us, we set targets for employees out on the field that heat is set and gross profit every day. And we make sure they hitting that end and they need to understand that what that is because all the scenes in the Sydney market and the traffic. And what we have. He is kind of like Bill at eight hours a day. The guys might be five hours in a day. So that's where it all comes back into understanding right, Ali. Right got to make sure you make a good profit. You know we have a system we use black eyes to fill in all the information at the end of it. I know the Ali right. I have to charge to make money. And don and that's the night. I'm lost. It's a lot of people had they when they had good jobs. We just had 20% of the time I made a profit. The other 80% of the time, the quality that the profit is not there. And I break even at the end, you will make a loss. You need to any business you know I make good money you make money. You can grow is too many guys out there that are playing the path of I couldn't charge that Billy Bob crack the Rand the right doesn't. And they're not charging enough personally to actually make sure their business thrives it just survives. Now you you might say let's market this for this. Well, yes, but no because in any age 20 25 you're about 60 to something that we do that allows us to get to that. And what you do there is you focus on what you're really good at. It's what we were know good at commercial work. I never did my time in the Marine commission maintenance. But we couldn't a commission with it. We said we knew about it. But I did my time in the country. So they should really good. It reflects a really good and complicated, especially. So we did lots of complicated inspections works because I was good at it. And women. It was a niche market. We also really good at maintenance and we were really responses. We picked a real site. But what we see is that it will be your second or third tier on cool. But these are prices. And so they would use a cheap us. So try this whole piece of work. But when those kinds of physical pulses like, come to us. And we would charge our rice and whatever was in that little time we get the service right. So you get to play to your strengths in a sauna in the corner is always doing on the talks as much as 60 bucks. Well, maybe that would go to God. Well his work on wartime entropy is spouting repays individual habits with his money in your area right. You can't keep doing the same thing. And expect a different result kind of a sad just to quickly touch on that until told the thousands of trainees every year. And the beating out constantly. He reads, I do this because someone down the road does that. I need to think about it only I believe it's only 10% of trainees at being less than a really profitable is a good 90% of Chinese that you'd be better off going to work for someone else. So if you're on that level and you're following everyone else at that level, you'll always be at that level. What's a sign of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and getting the same result if you don't do that leave it up. I can't believe you meant a business. Let's say they're only making three now see all the businesses that make it all. And they paying themselves less than $50,000 a year. It's like they're not even. They stop getting paid. Name it. You'll stop getting paid more than you. You doing something wrong. So I would call numbers like call them leave right. So the three numbers I mentioned labor labor materials and cash by three levers. So if it's interesting to you think about labor's new business to poll. And if you don't know where the numbers have a plan. Once again, you come to a coach right. You'll get the advice on why and why Apple is only at 60% That's right. What's one might doing in my business. It's not like I'm 80 to 90 to see why my magic materials only at 12 seem. Why am I getting 40. And if my cash flows at 70 days not 30. What's going on in my business. You actually need to get help in coaching can change that. It's like Vegas can't do that and kind of like. People like Amy can do that. And the other thing that we do is get you more aligned with your cabinet paper as well. There's so many things that they should be doing full use bleach that I do. And most accountants don't have a nice way I think would be a cannon advantage. And it tells you exactly what your cat needs to do for you. And now it is a little bit of extra work. It has cost a little bit of extra money but most people get their accountants by their mom or their dad or friend down right. You need an account is more entrepreneurial. The same business. Most accountants don't really care about you. It is clear that, signing off at the end you signing off at the end, do make money or not. OK When someone different to that. And that's a week can help but also working with a cap as well. That's a really good point. Cancer awareness and compliance with the tax law, the large legislation to quickly They are not bound to keep anything private. They are bound to disclose eventually all. So you pay only Texas. Never tell your account you've done caches would tell them in it because I have a large caches tried to line. I've never done. Never never never. So they are obliged by law to willfully or not. So they make sure you comply with all this. That's been selected on. So they are not frequent giving you consulting devices while you're not makes most of your profit. So they sit on the same gross profit at all. Not really well because they just didn't make any profit. Make sure you protect him of x in your tax losses. And so they can if you do go to go to Canada gets it right. But that's generally not the role, you do need consultants who can help you. The other thing I was going to touch on a little bit here is how much is good. Not much was about work. So once again, this applies for a bunch of us. Stephen Stephen people you should always be busy. When you getting 15 to 20 people. You need to be doing some serious marketing and advertising. But if you are just a small boy starting out. You should always have more than enough work than you can handle because does it all saying if you do a good job for your customer they'll use you again. But also I refer you to someone else. So if you know what to customers. And then you'll 3 and 4. So when you're small, you should always have plenty of work nail. So if you're small and you haven't got plenty of work. It's a really bad sign. It's like wrong when your business. And so what that is, you know the construction paradigm is three things. Time customers want the lowest price. That's the fastest time the lowest cost. And the highest quality right. It's that construction trying. And so your job as a tradesman is to deliver the best compromise of the job in the shortest time at the lowest cost to the OTS policy. And so if you haven't got enough work. You are not delivering that outcome to the customer. So you roll light all the time or you're just too expensive or you're rough on the service. Well, by talking to the customers on the quality outcome. And that's why you even got enough. So they've got enough work and you of really on the Stephen pasztor tainted office that stuff you need to really get to marketing. So if you're not busy you need to really look at your business and go, why is it not delivering a quality outcome that my customer is happy to keep repeating referring me to. So what do you think about that. I agree. I mean, we work on 72% repeat customers. So it's quite high. It's always a challenge that I a small business growing in. I think in this day and age with the internet and everything going on the old days and people are a lot more loyal. Now it's just like Google Google Facebook. Facebook So the loyalty is trying out a window a little bit. So you need to make sure you keep in contact with customers as ways around my control. They're always coming back and getting that I'll be here. Right So competitive now and in every job it you know it's a competitive market. So yeah, there's certainly a lot of things to do to make sure you keep those coming through the door. Yeah able to get a little bit growing growing the business. It's a whole other topic. So I mean, I'm going to give us the last topic, which is some building relationships and managed to make. It's another big topic. This is really, really hot topic as well in the first place. Let's have a quick look at yourself like a really good look, because sort of people can be defined into two main buckets whether we like or not people simple plan. You can't explain something tough like us and some people are people focused. And so I might try to I try and easy task as well, which is we often maybe not always good with people. So we want to get stuff done. And your business on. So the tax eating task flag is very high. But that means we can be too blunt and direct by accident with our staff and our customers. And so there's an old saying is, before you can satisfy the external customer the homeowner because that's why the internal customer you stop because you must your staff or actually customers of the business, you must treat them like, you're lucky to have the now if this is you if your task focused business owner is blunt and direct by accident and through a challenge to you. Now that's kind of me actually. And he doesn't have that problem actually. So I'm a process topic. But I often say it's all about relationships and communication. And I think you know some amazing business owners. And if you've got really good communication skills that just helps you get over the line. Now I know a lot of great businesses where the owner has a look communication skills and they got going straight to the point. And you can still be very successful. But it's all about relationships. I think in this world these days relationships is key. That's relationships with your staff that's relationship to your staff's partners. That's relationships with all your clients. You need to be able to build this connection because people like people that a like them. They like people that are engaging and relaxed, smiling and happy. I mean, I had to make some on that meeting the opera guy hey you going and having a terrible day. And I'm like, well, I don't really care you know. I don't want to hear that I'm thankful that of me. You know it's all about how can you be positive and upbeat and you'll stop want to work for a leader to be you. And that's how you build your team along the way. By thing a great leader and communication skills is quite critical in certain parts of business. What would you recommend citing by most charismatic friendly place in the world. Like is like sort of like could I get a staff member for the boys he's good at it or something. Listen, we can't be good. None of us are good at everything. You know and. And the whole thing is you've got to know what your strengths are. And then you don't know what your weaknesses are and get someone to help with that. And that's one thing that I've always done as well. You know my communication skills are good. But when it comes to doing a lot of The Grind and the hot book on of the finger pointing and my staff do that for me. So you've got to sort of saw it within your world. What are these for you if you do struggle with that a little bit then find people in your team that can step up and manage and lead your team along the line. Because I mean used you to let something you use that I was right about. What was that staff at the top of it all. I was just mentioning issues that I know was like a go like this like a golden nugget this is it. So fulsomely over the top. I got nice comments with me over the years. Otherwise find that you want to keep your staff on site. We all know that if you stop a happy and happy. And I enjoy coming to work. The best way they can then that's a bonus. But what I've always tried to do is make sure that my we understand the staff's partners, their families as well, because you know it's about building relationships not just with the trainee but with their partners or families as well because every tragedy at times has a bad day. You know every Friday Tom has a bad day. But the thing is you don't want him going home and whingeing about his day. And if the partner or family. They don't like you for whatever reason, they fuel the fire and they start throwing petrol on that fire and it starts exploding. So always thought if you can get those people on board as well that come back and go, oh Mike settle dams. One of those days. Just blessed what happened. And he's one of the best bosses you've ever had. Just turn it down and be talk. I find myself. That's a great way. And it's just really good knowing everyone and their families as well. And you know, they would rather take in the beach most guys and get to work. Let's face it. But if you go to work try and make it, fine. If you're yelling and screaming you stop all the time. It's not fun running in last. So long to be fearless be a government spring when I was young, but I got that far too. Oh, you can't blame the staff by just doing that just in the system you've created. Yelich and screaming what did I say. Don't blame them trying them. But if you trained them and they stood I'd do it just flick them off. Now I agree with how you've got to hire the right people do the writing take beauty and the right work ethics are the first thing you got to train them to what you do. And if you can do that. I'll hang around, on average, our business. We've had many people over 10 years. But on average have stopped between six and seven weeks. So I'm doing something right. And I do believe it's got a mixture of what we've talked about. I couldn't stress enough. What one of the pillars of this training, you will stop off right. And you need to work if you want to get cash on completion, you need to train to go to invoicing including and talk to the customer. And this is all you can say the office don't mess with it. Yeah, exactly. But one thing he can't say is like trying my staff that will go out and go out and they rhyme. And I'm like, yeah, but if you don't change stop. Well, I said she'd stop you know you got to make that decision or what you want for us here. I tell everyone I will train you to be the best trainee I understand business better than anyone. You kind of work with me and give me some good time. I will make you the best piece of sign it possibly can be. And then I decide when the right time is to move on. And I'm happy that. I don't know if you've noticed it's actually getting hotter out of government business nowadays and these young guys know the health and safety compliance is getting out of control right. Customer they've been demanding. It's harder than even though, to work for yourself, right. We're getting five minutes on the record with chip. So I'm going to get a summary and you get a little off a little bit and actually answer some questions that you have come through. And so that type lines right. So when you get shit. But no one for me is employing those people from day one to give me the ability to invoice every day. That's the key to unlocking cash flow is the ability to invoice in three days. So must number one. Second one is know your three key numbers around labor materials in cash flow. Those are your three key levers you probably need help. You probably need assistance need to pay some consultants training to learn to identify those numbers and why those numbers are the way they are and get systems and prices to change those levers coastline for course three little staff to get a survey of your staff to see where it uses know why you're going to get happy property owners external customers if your internal customers, your staff are happy like I'm not feeling valuable if they're not feeling happy like or appreciated why new. So they really go the extra mile for the customer when they're feeling like crap inside you must look after your stop and see them as customers of the business not those employee. I actually don't want that to employees. Why it's in co-workers it's not clear to them that that's all I would say we're all working for the property owner Roy like chaos. So I don't like the whole concept of both an employee not hide it. That's rubbish you're all co-workers oh boss is is the hand that pays the bills are all working together to make them happy. So they'll pay us all the time we have in this session spatial thinking. And if I'm lost I'll trade you for joining me on the webinar. Thanks for listening. Goodbye
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