Written by Jacki Hart, President, Consulting By Hart
Every now and then, something comes across your desk or into your inbox that is worth paying attention to. If you’re a contractor who sells services to your customers, which include labour and materials, equipment and overhead costs, then this article is worth your time to read. Unless you are either entirely recession proof in your market, or aren’t trying to improve profit in your business. But if you are working hard to figure out a way to be more profitable, read on.
Sometimes the most successful businesses have all of the cutting-edge technologies, software, apps, equipment and training. And some businesses have all of that, and still aren’t profitable enough to pay the owner well, build equity and an engaged, career-minded team.
Enter J. Paul Lamarche (JPL), and his industry-altering pricing system. JPL’s estimating and pricing system was officially adopted by...
In speaking with clients, one issue that is never far from their minds is cash flow. We found the article below from FBC to be really helpful. The original article can be found here.
When small business owners find themselves facing unexpected shortfalls or can’t pay bills during slow months, it’s a sign that they’re not monitoring their cash flow.
For a business, running out of cash is like getting stuck in quicksand: you sink deeper and deeper into the red as you borrow from one area to pay another. As you do your best to stay afloat, your business obligations – from payroll to loan payments – become increasingly hard to meet.
The good news is that you never have to let it get that far.
According to Kevin Cochran, co-founder of the wealth building and financial literary training series Enriched Academy, prevention is the best medicine when it comes the financial health of your business.
By avoiding the following 5 cash-flow mistakes,...
If you’ve been in business for five years or more then it’s time to analyze the health of your landscape company. Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) analyze specific systems, job functions, and the financial state of your company. You then take the results from your KPI and find new ways to be more efficient, bring new clients through your door, and improve employee performance, to name a few.
KPIs are measurements. They’re a performance indicator to test on all of your company’s systems. For example, you can perform a KPI in your operations department, or you can do a KPI on your profits and losses.
In a nutshell, KPIs evaluate the success of your green or white company or a particular system within your lawn and landscape organization.
A KPI’s results tell part of your company’s story, such as
"Great things in business are never done by one person. They’re done by a team of people." (Steve Jobs)
Open Book Management (OBM) is the philosophy that businesses will experience greater success by sharing relevant financial and operational information with every employee. It’s the practice of communicating with people via the numbers. Employees receive information that not only helps them do their jobs well but gives them an understanding of how the company is doing as a whole. According to John Case, who coined the phrase “open book management”, “a company performs best when its people see themselves as partners in the business rather than as hired hands". The intent is to give employees relevant information about the company so they can make better decisions as workers. This information includes, but is not limited to, revenue, profit, cost of goods sold, cash flow and expenses.
Open Book Management involves four basic practices:
Why Hire a Professional Bookkeeper?
As a small business owner, you need accurate and up-to-date financial information so you can make the best decisions for your business.
As your business grows and you hire employees, or take on more customers, keeping track of your business expenses and ensuring your books are accurate becomes more complex and time-consuming.
It’s a lot to keep track of while also running your business – sales, expenses, salary payments, and any other money that goes in and out of your business.
You know how important it is to keep good records, not only for CRA compliance and protecting yourself in case of an audit, but also if you want to sell your business down the line.
And frankly, you’re sick of staring at spreadsheets or teaching yourself how to use accounting software. You find yourself falling behind and losing track of receipts, and you’re afraid of missing out on important deductions or overdue invoices that cost you money. You...
Being a landscape business owner is hard. There are a million things vying for your attention, and it’s usually the most urgent that gets it. Meanwhile, your business keeps going – but is it growing? Has it increased in value over the last year? The truth is that most landscape business owners have no idea what their business is worth or how it’s actually doing. They’re usually fantastic technicians, happy to be working IN the business, but rarely ON the business. But knowing the value of your business, and understanding the steps needed to take to increase its value are critical for the growth and health of the business. It will increase profitability now and also make your business more attractive to potential buyers – whether you’re looking at selling now or in the future.
Let’s take a look at six pillars of business and identify some best practices and tools you can implement fairly easily to increase efficiency, productivity and profit....
I love the change of seasons. I have family living in west Africa and one of the hardest adjustments for them is that there’s no change of seasons (unless you count the change from “hot” season to “hotter” season).
But here at home in Canada, we get to experience the changing of the seasons. And fall is my favourite. It’s my favourite for all sorts of reasons – for cooler weather, for a return to routine after the summer, for campfires on cool nights, for Thanksgiving, and even for pumpkin spice lattes!
I also love the change of seasons when it comes to our business. The fall brings with it a change in the type of work we’re doing, the start of planning for the snow season, the excitement of new equipment, and the return of everyone back at work after summer holidays.
But the fall brings with it some unique financial stressors for business owners. These include material and equipment expenses, contracts that don’t pay out until...
Protect Others, Protect Yourself
As a snow contractor, the possibility of a slip and fall on one of your properties is always on your mind. Obviously, every precaution must be taken to ensure the safety of clients and those on their sites. But what documentation do you need to protect yourself against a slip and fall claim? Being prepared can make the process a lot smoother, less stressful, and less costly.
Slip and fall readiness and the ability to defend yourself in the event of a claim starts and stops at good documentation. In this case, there’s no such thing as too much information and there’s no substitute for being prepared.
The struggle for most owners is that they have difficulty differentiating between defending themself from a claim and being operationally efficient. Here’s the deal: the documentation you should be gathering does not make your operation more efficient. In fact, it makes things harder. Your employees may not love you, but your...
The original article by Kate Heinz and updated by Jessica Powers can be found HERE.
Organizational culture influences the success of your company, directly affecting the sort of candidates you attract and the employees you hold onto. There are several different types of organizational culture too; so you have to find the one that works best for you.
What Is Organizational Culture?
Organizational culture, or company culture, is defined as the shared values, attitudes and practices that characterize an organization. It’s the personality of your company, and it plays a large part in your employees’ overall satisfaction.
Having a strong organizational culture is important because it helps attract the right candidates and it keeps them engaged as employees. According to a 2019 Glassdoor study, 77 percent of adults would evaluate a company’s culture before applying to an open position, with more than half ranking an organization’s...
The original article by Kate Heinz can be found here.
Engaging employees is a highly effective business strategy, but it’s easier said than done. Your first inclination might be to build out a new benefits package or offer office perks like cold brew on tap or a wellness room. While your team will likely appreciate the new stuff, these changes do more to increase job satisfaction than boost employee engagement — two related but different concepts.
Employee Engagement Strategies:
What Is Employee Engagement?
Employee engagement is defined as the degree to which an employee is motivated and passionate about their work. While it’s often confused...