059: Robert Buzzard – Start a Business from Scratch

12278848_10205487120719236_3074954007732410240_n (2)Stan turns the tables and is interviewed by young entrepreneur, Robert Buzzard.  He is 20-years-old and wants to start an excavating and hardscaping business.  Robert has limited technical and business experience and wants to know the best plan of action.

Things you need to master when starting a business

  1. Sales – sales skills will make or break your company!
  2. Technical
  3. Managerial Skills
  4. Estimating

Questions that Robert asks Stan include:

  1. Should I get a job working for another company or jump right into starting a business?
  2. How should I start planning for my business?
  3. What licenses do I need to start-up?
  4. Do I need insurance?
  5. What start-up costs should I expect?
  6. How do you get quick cash in a pinch when absolutely necessary?
  7. What is my competitive edge?

054: Nick May – Full Time Income, 33% Effort

Nick May

Building a business is about putting the systems in place by making sure all the little details are in place.

Nick’s goal is to work 33% of the time while creating a full time income.  When you have streamlined systems in your business, you don’t have to micromanage everything for consistent profits.

Every person in your business knows exactly what they should be doing and when, so you are free to focus on growing your business.

Have a good system means that the appropriate person knows what to do when XYZ happens.

For example, your office staff knows exactly what to do when the phone rings: 1. Answer the phone. 2. If they are requesting and estimate, ______. If they have an issue, ______. 3. Follow up with an estimate in __ days.  Or whatever the case may be.  There is no confusion and things don’t get forgotten.

Nick even has a system down for hiring new employees.  This ensures that he only hire applicants that are a good fit for his business.

Small Business Naked
The Chaise Lounge

053: Construct-Ed – Trade School Education without the Expense and Time Commitment

Jeremiah & Rory from Construct-Ed join Stan today as they discuss a new way to get business education for you and your team.

Industry professionals who are experts in their field teach online courses on Construct-Ed. You no longer have to hunt down these professionals to try to get them to lunch or a cup of coffee so you can get tips and tricks out of them. Now, you can get insider information from the comfort of your home or office.

When you purchase a course, you can replay it an unlimited amount of time, so it is easy to share the information with members of your team over and over again until they have it figured out.

Topics covered include: business management, design and architecture, equipment, financial, marketing and sales, safety, software, trade skills, estimating and bidding, green building.

If you are an expert or have knowledge in a field, Construct-Ed is always looking to partner with new instructors, so contact them on their website to share your information and earn a little extra income.

Links from this episode

Construct-Ed.com

Info@Construct-Ed.com

048: Jeff Johnson – Forget Landscaping Skills and Learn THIS Instead!

Jeff JohnsonIf you want to run a successful business, forget about your craft. You can be the best landscaper…the best excavator…the best contractor around – but ultimately, none of that matters if you don’t know how to communicate. The hard truth is, it doesn’t matter how good you are at your craft, people skills are absolutely vital to your success. Jeff Johnson is an author, business owner, and former gubernatorial candidate for the state of MN. All these experiences have taught Jeff about the importance of connecting with people. Jeff and Stan talk about the importance of small talk, remembering names, and following up with people – these things matter!

Links from this episode

www.jeffjohnson.org

Find us on iTunes

Landscape Business Pro Podcast

046: Michael Port – Get Booked Solid with the Jobs You WANT

Michael PortMichael Port is a marketing guru that tells us NOT to focus on marketing – seriously. So what should we focus on? As business owners and managers, what ultimately makes a potential customer choose you and your company? Michael and Stan teach us just that in this episode of LBP. Learn how to go into a meeting and go into a bid with a confidence and demeanor that will absolutely land you more jobs. If you’re genuinely excited and enthusiastic about your business and the service you provide, the customer will pick up on it. Moreover, the customer will respond to it. Demonstrate credibility and earn the trust of your customers…and suddenly your pricing becomes less of a focus for your customers. They hire based on feeling, not price. But better yet, your bid process becomes a natural, simple sales conversation that you’ve been capable of having all along. The types of jobs you want, the jobs you love doing, the jobs you seek out – will start finding you.

Four Simple Steps That Can Guarantee a Contractor’s Success

  1. Return phone calls quickly
  2. Show up when you say you will
  3. Come in as close to budget as possible
  4. Finish the job on time

Links from this episode

www.michaelport.com
Book Yourself Solid
On Amazon: Book Yourself Solid Illustrated

Find us on iTunes

Landscape Business Pro Podcast

045: Jeff McManus – Weeders vs. Leaders: Change the Game in One Hour a Month

jeff-mcmanusTurning weeders into leaders. That’s Jeff McManus’ philosophy when it comes to shaping the culture of your company. But what does that mean? And what the hell does “company culture” have to do with my 10-man landscaping business? The answer is simple. By educating your employees, engaging them, empowering them, and trusting them, you can create great leaders out of “average” employees. Give them the know-how and drive that allows them to focus on bettering themselves, and being proud of their work. Not only will this “weed out” the weak employees, but suddenly your other guys are showing up early, asking good questions, taking pride in their job, but best of all – making each other accountable for their work – without you needing to say a word.

Links from this episode

jeff@jeffmcmanus.com
Landscape University

Find us on iTunes

Landscape Business Pro Podcast

043: Cullen Green – Owning a Landscaping Business at Age 16

It’s official – all of your excuses for not taking action are now BS. Let me run down some of the stats of our guest, Cullen Green. Cullen employs seven full-time people and has 5 trucks running. What’s the kicker? He’s 16 years old. This impressive young man bought a truck for his business before he was old enough to drive it. His knack for business and understanding of customer needs rival many seasoned business owners two and three times his age. This is one of the most inspiring episodes yet, so we’ll let it speak for itself. As you listen, remind yourself: Cullen is 16 years old.

Links from this episode

www.cullengreenlandscaping.com
Cullen Green Landscaping on Facebook

Find us on iTunes

Landscape Business Pro Podcast

042: Robert Mallon – Setting Goals for Life and the Bottom Line

Robert MallonI’ll be completely honest here. Self-help techniques and “ra ra!” type affirmations aren’t for all of us. But you’re listening to us to learn, right? To grow? To get that kick in the ass you need to start carving your own path? Give Robert Mallon a shot in this episode of LBP, and I guarantee you’ll be seeing some things in a different light.

Robert is a nationally-recognized professional speaker, business coach, mentor, and goal setter. Robert worked in a few different industries until 2002, when he became an entrepreneur and was soon excelling at starting and running businesses, mainly because Robert learned the importance of setting goals. Not just what goals to set, but how to set them. Robert has discovered that by clarifying your goals and focusing on ONE main goal per quarter, you can increase your productivity, results, and your bottom line. Robert firmly believes that in order to truly be happy – no matter how successful your business is – you have to incorporate personal goals, like family, as well. In this episode Robert shares with us how to do that and much more with some easy guidelines and expert advice. Don’t worry is you miss something – he has tons of content for you completely free on his website, Rusty Lion Academy.

Robert teaches us how to set “SMART” goals:

  • S – Specific
  • M – Measureable
  • A – Actionable
  • R – Realisitic
  • T – Time-Specific

Links from this episode

www.rustylionacademy.com
Rusty Lion Podcast
By phone: 770-906-7397

Find us on iTunes

Landscape Business Pro Podcast

040: Corinna Essa – Social Media 101 for Landscapers & Contractors

Corinna EssaCorinna Essa is a social media expert. She’s helped companies of all types and sizes approach their social media marketing in a way that makes sense for their industry, budget, and marketing goals. Take Pinterest for example…the simplicity of posting a beautifully photographed before and after picture on Pinterest can have a profound affect on your company’s exposure. Once Pinterest users start “pinning” your photos, you can essentially sit back and let the Pinterest community do your advertising for you. If Pinterest is a model that works for your business, then Instagram is another photo-based platform that may be perfect for your company’s social media efforts.

Maybe your business model is B to B. If that’s the case, LinkedIn might be a good choice. LinkedIn is a popular professional networking website that you can use to bypass gatekeepers and pre-qualify leads without them even knowing it. Stan and Corinna also talk about Twitter. They discuss how to best use Twitter, but more importantly, how landscapers can utilize Twitter in a way that makes sense for the landscaping and excavating industry. And then there’s Google Plus. What the hell is it – and as a landscaping contractor – how can it help my business? Corinna and Stan clear up some of the mysteries around these various social media platforms and shed some light on how contractors like yourself can approach social media with a realistic and targeted game plan.

Links from this episode

Social Media Worldwide
Corinna on Twitter @smwonline
Ello
Pinterest
Facebook
LinkedIn
Twitter
Google Plus
Sprout Social
Buffer.com

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Landscape Business Pro Podcast

039: Bill Ross – Angie’s List: What Every Contractor Needs to Know

Angie’s List is a website designed make money by helping consumers find reputable service providers in their area. How does it work? Angie’s list charges service providers to be “featured” on the Angie’s List website, making the company’s listing more visible in order to generate leads. You might wonder, “What does it cost?” Well, how much have you got? Bill Ross, former sales rep at Angie’s List, is dedicated to helping contractors save money by teaching them the right way to negotiate with Angie’s List salespeople. Unlike many of the commission-based salesmen on the other end of the phone, Bill always has your best interests in mind. If negotiated properly, your Angie’s List experience can be a lucrative one. But, if the salesperson is able to take advantage of you through various “questionable” sales techniques, then you could end up wasting a LOT of money. In this episode, Bill teaches us to understand the process, and play serious hardball to make sure your company has the best chance of success with Angie’s List.

“Always quote high…you can never quote high enough!”

Links from this episode

Email Bill at billrossmarketing@yahoo.com
Angie’s List

Find us on iTunes

Landscape Business Pro Podcast