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Owning Your Own Carpentry Business

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Contractor advice - management tips

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So you want to go out on your own?

Many — may be most — tradesmen and women get the urge sooner or later to strike out on their own.  To work for themselves.  To be in control of their jobs and fate.  To get “all the money”.  But: is it right for you?

Hanging Up The Tool Belt

Honestly, it’s not right for most people, no matter what their profession.  There’s an old truism in the business world that the best person at a job is usually not the best person to manage that job.  This is probably the most obvious in sales.  A great salesperson has great sales skills: confidence, super-human initiative and ambition, inter-personal communications, the ability to read people, likeability, and so on.  These are field skills.  In contrast, a great sales manager — someone who manages salespeople — has a more administrative job.  They have to work with corporate, analyze spreadsheets, lead organizations, build teams, hire and fire people, set goals, and so on.  Few truly great salespeople make good sales managers because the skill sets required for the jobs are very different.

 Management Skills

Likewise, the skills required to form, sell, and manage a trade business are quite different from the skills needed to do that trade.  The best electrician or carpenter isn’t always the most successful electrical or carpentry contractor.

Business Owner Skills

Here’s a partial list of the skills and things to consider that a business owner needs, in addition to the ability to do the actual job you get hired for.

Thanks so much for calling Smith Contracting.  If you’re calling about new work, I truly apologize but I’m booked up right now for the foreseeable future.  I do hope you’ll think of me for future projects, though.  If you’re calling for another reason, please leave a message after the beep.

Are you ready to do this?


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