Focus for Construction Contractors
Focus is a core factor of business success
Yet focus, simply for the sake of focus makes no sense. Because, let’s face it, focusing on a screen (be it large or small) is rather an easy accomplishment. Think TV viewing, social media, or electronic games.
Or you could find yourself focusing on the daily minutia in the office or on the site and never on the growth of your construction contracting business.
So yes, focus is core. Yet, when building and using your focus “muscles” it matters what you focus on.
Here’s the deal. You get to choose. Choose between being busy or being effective. The matter is made simpler (not easier) when you realize there are only three areas on which you as a construction contractor need to focus.
Before we get to the three, I’ll mention there are those who believe there are only two areas on which you need to focus. They say the two areas are client satisfaction and making a profit. And, I agree they are important. The only other area I and a few others are suggesting is important to build your construction business is the third area, that of employee well-being. So, there you have it. The three places which call out for your focus are:
- Client satisfaction (What do your clients need?)
- Profit (How can you make money?)
- Employee well-being (Why will your best employees stay with you?)
How you spend your time, which tasks you take up, where you aspire to learn more, what you choose to delegate, even what you decide to dump, should all be based on these three focus areas.
Focus – a story of how that looks
The other day I was chatting with a friend on the phone. I mentioned to her that a certain “office helper” around here had recently gotten into reading Harry Potter. Because my friend is a retired school teacher, she laughed and said yes, she had read the first Harry Potter book. She read it because she knew her students would be reading it and she wanted to have a working knowledge.
I asked if it was a good book. Should I take the time to read it so I could be better at discussing it with the “office helper?” Her response reminded me of a focus folly. She said, “Oh it’s alright. But it isn’t, like some of my books, one I could curl up with in my soft easy chair and be still reading when the firemen carried me out of my burning house.” Now, that is focus!
With that in mind, here are three focus follies in which you don’t want to find yourself.
Have you ever known someone who was super excited about the wedding, yet had given little to no thought to the marriage which would follow? The wrong focus can seem so “right.” Yet, having focus is of no use when you’re focusing on the wrong thing.
One of our “office helpers” is quite excited about an adventure the entire crew will be taking later this year. While the rest of us are happy that we’ll be going to Universal Studios Hollywood, this “office helper” believes our destination is The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™. (Yep, the same office helper mentioned above.) No matter how many times we let her know there is more to be experienced she returns to her point of focus.
There is someone I know who runs to the store for a new toilet paper supply when she notices the last roll is almost empty. After bringing the toilet paper home, she then runs back to the store for the eggs she wants to use to prepare breakfast. On her way to work, she stops in at the convenience store to pick up a snack pack to be used for that day’s lunch. On the way home from work she picks up a few steaks for the grill. Then as the meat is being placed, she remembers there are no sides for the evening meal.
At this point, she enlists one of her children to run to the store to purchase some deli sides because there is no time to bake potatoes or cook a vegetable. Later in the evening, she runs to the store to purchase shampoo (after she steps out of the shower and puts back on her clothes.) Lest you think I’m exaggerating. I’m not. She will tell you herself this is how her day goes – because she doesn’t have time to get everything done. Do you see the irony there?
Putting the puzzle together
Obviously, avoiding the focus follies is important. Learning how to be better at focusing on the right things is the next step. This article, 5 Steps To Finding Your Focus, from Fast Company says, “. . . determine what gets done by using filters, such as your deadlines, values, available time, or resources, and arrange your day around the things that are important–big or small.” Be sure to check out the article to see how to put the 5 steps to use in your commercial construction business.
It is our desire this article (among our growing library of construction-centric informational articles) is helpful in assisting commercial construction contractors build better building businesses.
Providing Accounting and Advisory Board Level counsel for small to medium commercial construction subcontractors.
So you can Run With the Big Dogs. 866-629-7735