If you believe that all heroes wear capes – and can fly in the sky while deploying supernatural strength or using their bionic eye-laser to see through building – you might want to turn your expectations down a little. There is no such thing as the Superman of tradespeople. However, a tradesman hero is a different kettle of fish. It’s the person people trust with all their home improvement projects. More importantly, the tradesman (or tradeswoman) hero is someone clients are more than happy to recommend and promote, from the family showing off their newly renovated bathroom to the Millennial sharing the before and after pictures of their apartment remodeling on Instagram. There is only one thing every white van business owner should think about now, and it is: How can you become a celebrated tradesman hero?
Make sure you can afford to take long projects
You might be a one-person business, but it doesn’t mean that you should only work on small and easy projects. Most homeowners are happy to work directly with single contractors or small teams when they consider renovating and remodeling projects at home. Indeed, nobody feels comfortable inviting a large group of workers under their roof for an extended period of time. However, if it’s a one or two-people job, your customers are more likely to feel at ease with sharing their home with you for several days or weeks. Unfortunately, long-term projects mean delayed payments. You need to be able to manage a consistent level of cash flow to keep your business afloat when you take on complex jobs. Reliable cash flows ensure that you can focus on quality without trying to rush it to get paid sooner.
Don’t take any chances
You can’t afford to take risks in your job. From the loss of your tools to causing injuries to bystanders, you need dedicated tradesman insurance to support your business. Indeed, small companies and one-person ventures work on a tight budget. Dealing with the financial consequences of tool replacement or injury compensation could be devastating for your business survival.
Price your services fairly
Your clients are likely to check the price of your services online. A simple google search for the average cost of a bathroom renovation project, for instance, can be a source of conflict if you fail to share your pricing method. It’s in your client’s interests to question your price and ask whether they can bring it down. Therefore, offering a clear breakdown of your cost alongside with an explanation that lets them know what is negotiable and what can be replaced with a cheaper alternative is a no-brainer.
Use visual time planners
Delay is a typical complaint in the construction sector. Whether you’re offering kitchen remodeling services or building an extension to the living room, you might encounter unexpected challenges. The truth is that you can’t always avoid delays. However, you can create a time planner to share with your clients. Use the planner to explain where potential problems might arise. A warned customer is unlikely to blame you for delays.
A tradesman hero doesn’t wear a cape. Instead, it’s an expert who understands how to manage cash flow, risks, pricing and customer expectations effectively to build a trustworthy relationship.