None of us expected 2020 to look like this, but here we are. So, now what?
As we all get back to normal, now is a great time to stop and make a business plan. Simply put, if you don’t plan where you are going, you will end up where you don’t want to be. Do you have a business plan to get you where you want to be a year from now?
Here is the good news:
- Money is cheap
- New housing is strong
- Remodeling work is good
Now is a great time to take a serious look at your business. Be honest with yourself. Are you planning on doing the same thing you did last year and the year before that? Or, are you looking at the opportunities you can invest in to make your company stronger? While everyone else is playing it safe, you can move forward and better your business, now and for years to come!
Let me give you a great example. We have a customer that has been a hardwood flooring contractor for a very long time. He has always done pretty well, saving during the up-times to make it through the down-times. Business was consistent, but never great. He wanted more, so he made a change. He decided to add more flooring products and services for his customers.
Adding new elements to a business increases your opportunities, but it also increases your time, your cost and your risk. Instead of wishing he could do more, he sat down and mapped out the steps he would need to add these new products. It was important to him to add to his business while maintaining the high quality of his current offerings. To do that, he had to be specific and intentional. He simply needed to keep his eye on the current business and work hard to add the new products at the same time.
Today, he has tripled his business. Maybe even greater than that, he loves what he does more than ever. His whole personality has changed. Secondly, much of the extra business he added was “easy business.” While he still specializes in hardwood flooring, he is often able to offer his customers additional products and services while he is doing the quoted work. Customers have found that they don’t have to deal with multiple work crews and are instead able to get everything in a one-stop shop. They love it and he gets a much larger check.
How did he get so lucky? It’s simple. He didn’t leave it up to luck. He built a road map, followed it throughout the year, and made sure he was learning about and selling more products to every customer he worked with. Over time, he has added more products and more business opportunities than he ever thought possible. Each year brought more. He didn’t need a great five-year plan to succeed. He had five great one-year plans.
I tell our team at Horizon Forest Products: It’s truly amazing how successful you can be if you become the best person you can be to every customer you have. Many industries are in trouble right now. However, for those of us in hardwood flooring, the future is bright. Instead of worrying about what the next year will bring, take this time to decide what it will bring. Then, make a plan to achieve it. The difference between those who will thrive coming out of 2020 and those who will feel lucky to have gotten through it, will be in the plan.
Horizon Forest Products is headquartered in Raleigh, North Carolina. To learn more, please visit horizonforest.com