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Multi-tradesman defender
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What is it that keeps you going, no matter what the economic cycle is like?

For me, even when I am broke, the money doesn't do it for me. I find that I cannot find a way to stay on top of my game everyday.

I don't do all of the follow up stuff I should be doing.
I don't do all of the paperwork (on time) I should be doing.
I even have a hard time keeping up with estimates, which should be a major priority, if I want the work.
Sometimes it feels like I am the 98% contractor, or maybe I am, and that last 2% is almost impossible for me to grasp.

There is a ton of knowledge here, so for those that need it, share your secrets to running a solid company. Or at least share what keeps you motivated.
 

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Knowing that the season is short. I only have to work for about 6 months a year, then I can chill. There's no way I could mentally handle the daily grind of doing this year round. If I want to have a good time in the off season, I need to work hard.
 

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Lists! It's not sexy but that's how I do it. I keep a running to do list and I hate having anything on that list, yet there are always stuff on it. I keep everything on there. Phone calls I have to make, bills I have to pay, bids I have to do, contracts I have to write, I mean everything. I never get it all done but it keeps me from ever feeling overwelmed and keeps me on track.
 

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Professional Instigator
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6,872 Posts
Every time I get frustrated and just feel like giving up. I get a humble first time buyers couple that are really the american dream.

They just want the house fixed and a good contractor to do it. They treat us like skilled workers that we are and appreciate everything we do for them.

The job goes according to plan and they thank us for it

When that happens once or twice a year. It makes all the other crap seem marginal.
 

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Sean
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5,533 Posts
Get your systems in place & streamline them as much as possible.

Occasionally I will get that "Screw it I will do it tomorrow", but then I either can't get to sleep or I end up waking up early. While I will occasionally get back logged, I try to always tell a customer that it will take X amount of time for X, Y or Z which is longer than required. When things start getting really hectic, I start writing it all down as OGStilts does - so I don't miss anything.
 

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Get your systems in place & streamline them as much as possible.
:thumbsup: This too....this is very important. I am constantly improving my systems any way I can. My lists are just part of the system that works for me.

Think about it, look at McDonalds for example. They have developed a system that works for them. They have then duplicated it over and over again. Every McDonalds is pretty much the exact same setup. The fry machines are in the same place. The milk shake machine is in the same place. The drive up window is in the same place. The menus are the same. etc etc.

This makes it easier for you to bring on employees when and if you need them. Not to mention it makes your business sellable when you decide it's time to hang it up. A good system is easy to teach to someone else and will make your company worth more should the day come that you decide to sell it.

I know I read this in one of my books but can't remember which one. It just made sense to me. I don't have it all figured out yet but I just take it one piece at a time.
 

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ampman
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783 Posts
the fear of working for someone else:no:
 

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I like Green things
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23,069 Posts
It made it to 10 posts before it made a hard left:laughing::laughing:

Like Rory said, you just have those 2 or 3 people every year that treat you like you are a king. They are super nice, help you clean up, thank you numerous times. Those make it all worth it.

The only problem with that is, the next job the HO's will be stuck-up, hard to get through to, like squeezing rocks for water. As the saga continues.

I do it so I can help support single mothers and hot college students:whistling
 

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It made it to 10 posts before it made a hard left:laughing::laughing:

Like Rory said, you just have those 2 or 3 people every year that treat you like you are a king. They are super nice, help you clean up, thank you numerous times. Those make it all worth it.

The only problem with that is, the next job the HO's will be stuck-up, hard to get through to, like squeezing rocks for water. As the saga continues.

I do it so I can help support single mothers and hot college students:whistling
sounds like my golf game. 90 embarrasing shots and one that tiger couldn't pull off. you keep going back for more
 

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Thoughts of being old and homeless. I don't want to end up looking for lunch in the dumpster behind McDonalds.
 

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KemoSabe
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14,233 Posts
The job motivates me. Stepping back at the end of the day, or completing one phase of the job, looking at what has been accomplished and knowing I put 100% into it.
Customers also motivate me. For instance, when several contractors tell them it can't be done and I tell them I've already done it twice.:thumbsup:
 

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It made it to 10 posts before it made a hard left:laughing::laughing:

Like Rory said, you just have those 2 or 3 people every year that treat you like you are a king. They are super nice, help you clean up, thank you numerous times. Those make it all worth it.

The only problem with that is, the next job the HO's will be stuck-up, hard to get through to, like squeezing rocks for water. As the saga continues.

I do it so I can help support single mothers and hot college students:whistling
Ditto that, and make money so I can buy more TOOLS :clap:
 
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