Focus on Core Business Basics, Kitchen and Bath Firms
It’s now a cliché to say that the world has changed since
9/11, but it’s also a “brutal fact” that business owners including
those in the kitchen/bath industry need to recognize, according to
a leading construction industry consultant.
And, with the nation’s economy still on shaky ground, consumer
confidence declining and global uncertainties rising, it’s time for
business owners “to regroup and focus on the fundamentals of good
business,” advises FMI Corp., a Raleigh, NC-based consultant.
FMI recommends that design-firm leaders take the following steps
to assure that their business remains on solid ground:
- Meet with current and past clients, as well as prospects, and
“ask them what’s on their mind not talking, just listening to what
they perceive is the value of what the firm does or can
- Segregate clients and services “into high-, medium-, and
low-return categories” and actively “work to reduce or eliminate
low-value clients and services.”
- Brainstorm on how project delivery systems can be run more
smoothly and profitably.
- Sit down with staff members and discuss the employees’ “vision
of their future,” sharing ideas on how the direction of the company
can be aligned with employees’ needs and career goals.
“Every CEO in the country will say that his or her firm’s most
valuable asset is its people, but, in many cases, that’s a hollow
claim,” FMI Corp. observes. “Look at the investment that’s made to
grow and nurture these people. How much does the company spend on
education compared to marketing or technology? Does the company
offer a leadership development program?
What is the company’s reputation among people who used to work
there, and among people who work at similar firms?”
The fact is, most firms actually invest little in their people a
practice that stunts growth, and increases turnover, FMI points
- Invest in business leaders’ own management skills by
courses in leadership development, communications and
FMI says it also sees a need for:
- Strategic Assessment what business owners are doing to assess
their performance level.
- Strategic Sourcing what owners are doing to more
cost-effectively buy outside services.
- Strategic Program Control how business owners can more
effectively control their capital to achieve targeted profit