3 Tips for a Successful Electrical Business Plan
So many electrical contractors roll through each year WITHOUT an electrical business plan. It doesn't need to be anything fancy but you need to have an idea around what you are trying to achieve. Why did you start your electrical business in the first place? Was it to have more time to spend with friends and family? Was it to make a load of money? Was it so you can tell your friends you run a business? Whatever your reason is, you need to start with a vision of what your life looks like when you achieve everything you started your business for in the first place.
1. Start With The Reverse Visualisation SMART Planning Technique
Imagine it is the 31st of December 2018 and you are sitting back with a beer and reflecting on your most successful year yet of your electrical contracting business. Everything you planned turned out exactly how you wanted and you are experiencing all of the benefits that come with those results.
From here, break down the whole year into months and weeks and the actions to took and when you took them to achieve what you have. This is will force you to not just dream but think critically on HOW to achieve your dreams. When you write what you did, write in past tense as if you have already achieved your goals in the SMART goal format:
EXAMPLE: January 31st, 2018:
- I reviewed my Profit & Loss and Expenses by contact reports for the last year and removed the services that provide little value and have started using the ones that do to maximise the value they do provide - I did this by the end of week one of January.
- I reviewed my Profit & loss and Income by contact reports for the last year and have listed my most profitable customers to seek more of them this year and cut my least profitable and most costly customers to make time to market to the more profitable ones - I completed this by the end of week one of January.
As you can see in the example above, I have written in past tense even though it was the start of January. This provides accountability to yourself. It's the same as telling a customer you are going to be onsite at a certain time. You make sure you are there on-time! By writing with a pen and paper, you are kinaesthetically (touch & feel) setting goals you have already achieved in your mind. You are not just saying dreams, you have to work backwards as to how you will achieve them as well.
2. Include All Aspects of Your Electrical Business In Your Plan
Has your plan ever been "I'm going to make more money this year" or "I'm going to spend more time with my family this year"? The problem with these kinds of empty goals are they are non substantiated with actionable tasks to make these things a reality. These are actually just dreams when you set goals like this. I wish, I hope, I would like type goals are dreams. Use tip number one to set awesome goals that will work. Next step is to set goals for everything in your business.
In the Electricians Success Academy, we teach electrical contractors how to achieve success in all categories of your business which include:
- Strategic & Financial Planning - Setting yourself SMART goals every month and preferably every week to guide you to achieve the yearly SMART goals you have set.
- Business Operations - How are you going to streamline your operations, deliver more to your customers, increase the value of every job you do?
- Invoicing & Quoting - We teach the Shopping List Pricing System to maximise the profit of every job, provide the most value to their customers and speed up the process and conversions of quoting and estimating.
- Sales & Marketing - How are you going to get more leads and customers, what actions will you need to take to maximise your ongoing customer relationships?
- Team Development - How will you monitor the performance of your team, ensure that they are working at a high productivity and loving their work?
- Finance & Performance Reporting - When will you set aside time to check that you are financially on track for the success you have planned this year, what else you you need to measure?
- Technical - How are you going to improve your technical understanding of your trade and your technical understanding of these categories of your business?
- Customer Service - How are you going to improve your business relationships with your customers this year from the new customer calling you for the first time through to your longest serving customer. Consistency is key here!
- Personal Growth - This is one of my favourite topics to talk about because we all get stuck thinking about our businesses that it consumes our lives and we forget what really matters which leads me nicely into my final tip on Electrical Business Planning.
3. Plan for What You Want to Achieve Outside of Your Electrical Business.
I've done this and continue to find myself only thinking about my electrical business and how "when I do this" or "when I do that" I'll have a better relationship with my wife, my kids, my friends, myself... The truth of the matter is there are no shortcuts to success in the electrical industry. It is a labour intensive industry and you NEED to be patient. This is the biggest tip I can give to any aspiring electrical contractor ever. Use the Reverse Visualisation SMART Planning Technique to set goals for:
- Your Family - If you have a partner and/or kids, I bet they would appreciate it if you could be present with them not just physically but mentally present for them.
- Your Friends - As you get busier, you find that you will get less time for your friends if you let this happen. Set goals to spend time with your friends more often.
- Yourself - This seems to be the last thing that guys look after when they get consumed by their workload. Set goals around getting to the gym, eating healthy and time to do the things you love.
- Education - You may be working a lot harder than you need to be. Learn from others who have already found success in the electrical industry. Find courses on the topics you need to work on the most and keep an open mindset with everyone, you never know what you will learn from them.
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