Perhaps you remember the song lyrics,
“Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
Those days of soda and pretzels and beer
Roll out those lazy, hazy, crazy days of summer
Dust off the sun and moon and sing a song of cheer..” by Nat King Cole. I heard the song the other day and it brought some thoughts to mind.
Well, “the lazy hazy days of summer” are not what I was thinking about! I’m referring to the typical days of a contractor. Day in and day out they are too lazy to do what needs to be done to fix their business. Or it’s as if they have a haze around them and can’t see the issues that need addressing. In either case they let the days slip by without maximizing the income and profit they deserve for the efforts they put into their business. It becomes frustrating to a consultant when you pass along information that will make a substantial difference in the top line or the bottom line of a business and the owner or manager is too lazy or hazy to implement the change. I see it very often with contractors and as a very strong advocate for business owners and managers, it is so disappointing. The changes would make their life easier, or more fun, or more profitable, or protect their business, yet they remain in their lazy hazy mode. It appears to be an epidemic in the contracting business.
Recently, an old friend in the contracting business closed up shop. I had always admired him for the niche market he had carved out in the plumbing business. But he refused to move with the times, prospect for new customers, or add services to attract new customers and have additional sales to existing accounts. There was nothing to sell at the end except a small building and then bankrupt the business. There was nothing to pass to the next generations, nothing for retirement, and nothing to give to his favorite charity. He is not a pauper but his decisions left hundreds of thousands if not millions of dollars lost. I have several other friends in the contracting business moving towards the same situation. What a shame after decades of struggling, sacrificing, and under-compensating themselves, they will not be able to enjoy a successful retirement in a few years.
I have been a member of associations, groups, been to hundreds of seminars and saw and still see the same thing happening to so many contractors. The epidemic has shown up everywhere.
Now some do have issues beyond their control that affect the profitability of their business. These can include health issues, accidents, unscrupulous owners or general contractors, theft, and family problems. Some of the results cannot be overcome but once again I have seen the lazy hazy contractor letting the situation control them.
Are you caught up in the lazy hazy days of business? You probably know exactly what you need to do to make your business a success. DO IT! If you don’t know what to do to make your business a success, then find a consultant to help you. Only do this if you truly are willing to change.