Not long ago, we provided some tried-and-true tips for taking courses and becoming a licensed California contractor. Today, we’d like to do something similar and share something that experienced construction professionals know, and a piece of advice that could help you do more in your contracting career while avoiding some of the biggest sources of stress.
What is this magic piece of information and insight? To always spend a little extra time getting to know about a project, and ask a few more questions, before you put in a bid or get started.
In other words, slow down and take your time, especially at the beginning of any new construction project. Although you might feel like you’re just taking longer than you should – a lot of new contractors like to rush into jobs – you’ll get a few important advantages and benefits:
You’ll get better at bidding on construction projects. The more you know about the project, the better you can estimate how much it will actually cost to finish. Be careful about rushing through this step in the process, because the assumptions you make now can be expensive mistakes later.
You’ll be able to give your clients more accurate schedules. The same applies to timelines, where taking a few extra minutes can help you accurately figure out how many hours or days you’ll need (as well as how much help you might need for employees or other contractors). People love construction professionals who can deliver work on time, so make sure you’re projecting an accurate schedule
Asking more questions is good for your marketing. Asking questions shows potential customers that you’re listening, which isn’t just good for your work, but for your sales technique also. If you want to be awarded more projects, ask more questions.
You’ll get fewer nasty surprises as you work. The last thing you want as a contractor is to find an issue that’s going to cost you a lot of time or money, especially after you’ve already started work. The more you know about the situation going in, the less likely you are to be surprised.
You’ll earn a better reputation in the California construction industry. People like to work with contractors who are thorough, and doing a lot of pre-work research makes you seem more detailed than your competitors.
Aren’t these benefits important enough to take a few extra minutes, or even a few extra hours, at the start of each construction project? Once you give it a try, we’re sure that you will agree that it is. This is one set that can literally transform your construction career; give it a shot.