Congratulations on your decision to start your own general contracting business! After long hours of preparation, you are ready to create a business that will become a long-lasting, lucrative, and stable pillar of your community. General contractors are an invaluable part of our society, contributing to the economy, fostering business growth, and helping homeowners achieve their vision every day.
If you’re a go-getter, you’re always thinking of how you can start your next great business venture. While it can be tempting to rush headfirst into starting a new adventure, creating a long-running and successful business takes time and patience. Lucky for you, up-and-coming cities like Nashville are constantly finessing their city skylines, and you might just be the one for the job! Let’s explore some of the “Do’s and Don’ts” of starting your own company as a general contractor.
DO Obtain Proper Licenses
Before you consider starting your own general contracting business, it’s important to determine whether you have obtained the proper licenses to practice in your state. It is imperative to make sure you are operating legally and safely within your state’s laws to protect both you and your clients. Start by researching the laws in your state, studying for your contracting exam, and obtaining a license to practice before you plan to grow your business.
DON’T Forget Your Flexibility
The new potential for flexibility can be a huge perk or a potential obstacle for new business owners. Be prepared to work long hours or change plans at a moment’s notice to cater to your clients. Receiving positive reviews online and getting word-of-mouth buzz is extremely important for the upward mobility of your new business. Make sure your clients are satisfied (and telling their friends!) by being flexible and always going above and beyond.
DO Use Best Business Practices
Always operate with a level of professionalism that will leave your clients satisfied and inspired to recommend you to others. Training team members in best business practices, keeping a close eye on your finances, and maintaining a positive and efficient management style are all great examples of how to amp up your professionalism and create a flourishing new business.
DO Be Present
Make sure you are always available to current and potential clients. If you don’t want to lose work to your competitors, you must make yourself accessible to reach during business hours. This will set you apart from the competition and create a personalized experience, resulting in more referrals, better reviews, and happier clients.
DON’T Forget To Set Boundaries
While you definitely want to be present with your valued clients, remember you don’t need to be accessible at all hours of the day. Setting boundaries is healthy for your personal life and an important part of learning how to create a thriving business. State clearly on your business cards, website, and social media your hours of availability to minimize confusion and foster respect between yourself and your clients.
DO Sell Yourself
Step up your marketing strategy! Word-of-mouth referrals are great, but there’s more than one way to grow your audience of potential clients. Start by hiring a professional to design an eye-catching logo and website. If your website is visually appealing and easy to use, you will see an increase in engagement and get more work. Also, consider having an online presence that goes beyond a standard website by engaging on social media or starting a blog.
DON’T Forget Why You Started
Most importantly, don’t lose sight of what got you into this business in the first place! When you are a general contractor, you have the ability to maintain flexibility in your life, become a leader within your company and community, and change lives by helping your clients achieve their dream vision for their home or business.