I meet with many women at the beginning of their journey in business, and most if not all ask about adding value to their construction business. Whether it be as the partner to a tradie, a builder or in the retail sector there is so much we can do to become a valuable part of the business. We are great assets to business in this profession, bringing our much needed skills to add real value to the business venture.
Adding Value To Your Construction Business
When I started in construction, I first thought all I could do was contribute to the admin side of the business, however over a short period of time, I found many ways in which I could not only contribute but improve our business and you can too! Here are a few ways you can add value to a business.
I have to be honest, it is my least liked part of what I do, but helping out with the bookkeeping is a great way to add value, and helps get you right into the control center of the business. Having financial insight is imperative for the sound operation of a business, you simply can’t make crucial decisions without good knowledge of what is going on.
If you are like me, I didn’t have a clue, so I found someone to teach me all things MYOB as it was the system we were using, but you can find bookkeepers and accountants that give lessons in all accounting software. Can you see what I did there, not only did I add value to our business by taking over the bookkeeping, I upskilled myself.
Right from your very first subcontractor or employee, your business is going to need someone who can take care of HR. This is another area in which I needed a little assistance and companies like the HIA and Master Builders often have mini courses that can help you learn what you need to know. Not only does this add value to the business, but can potentially save you a huge amount of money!
I started out by simply heading up our toolbox talks each fortnight, it was a great way for me to comfortably get onsite and get to know our trades. If you would like to give one a try, you can find a free template here.
My favourite part of the job!! We have regular site meetings with our clients, which at first I would just sit in on and take notes, but in the last few years I have been running them myself. The clients loved having me there as I have strengths that the builder doesn’t and visa versa, together we make a better team for our clients, and you can do this too! Don’t ever be affraid to say something along the lines of “I’m not quite sure, but I will find out”. We can’t know everything in the beginning, but we can sure learn and then share what we have found.
As much as I hated paperwork, I love ordering. I enjoy the challenge of negotiating the best price for our business and the thrill of chasing a quote. Perhaps this is something you would enjoy as well. When I first started I had no idea what I was ordering, and if I were honest, sometimes the reps would take advantage of that, but it didn’t take me long to learn who I could and couldn’t trust! Again not only are you adding value to your company, you are saving money! How many of us have a business partner who is so busy working they leave ordering to the last minute and just buy from where they think will be less expensive without checking?
WOW, this is so important and so often overlooked by all as it seems too difficult. It’s not, if you are unsure check in with the HIA or Master Builders and ask for help. There are all sorts ways in which you can get the help you need to get this set up and running in your business and believe me when I say, this will be the most important part of the role you play.
I cannot over emphasis how important being on top of your workplace health and safety obligations is.
Job Scheduling/Project Management
This was a big one for me. There were times when the Builder was simply too busy to effective be scheduling the deliveries and trades. You don’t need to know the complete ins and outs of construction for you to be effective at scheduling and doing so will add great value to your company.
Gone are the days in which word of mouth was enough to win you a job, now days an online presence is a must in order for your clients to find you and is a massively undervalued position within a business. Marketing isn’t the specialist field it once was, today clients like to know who you are before they contact you, which is simple to convey through social media. Once you have mastered the social side of your marketing, check out online courses to help you delve a little deeper into how you can successfully market your company.
There really are so many more ways in which you can add value to your business, it is time for us to step outside of our predefined roles and create value within the business ourselves. Use your intuition and find what you think isn’t working, and fix it like only we can!
I’d love to know how you add value to your business?