Working on the business, not in the business

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This year has been a very tough year financially. Along with many unexpected large equipment repairs, our labor costs also rose.

Along with our aggressive growth, we also made many changes which were amplified by the growth.  The biggest downfall was changing the guys from commission pay to hourly.

The hours got out of hand, and we experienced a ton of overtime as well which we never had to pay out in the past so was an entirely new consideration.

I have always been pretty good about working on the business and not in it. Unfortunately this year, though, we never found a legitimate mechanic so I ended up taking that position myself.

We also were desperately in need of a production manager but we didn’t think we could “afford” to have one.

Truth be told, we couldn’t afford NOT to have a production manager. We had a bunch of unskilled labor that was not trained properly which ended up giving us inefficient crews who dragged out overtime and created customer complaints which created more admin time etc. If we had had this position I think it would have more than paid itself off with the labor savings, as well as freeing up our sales guy’s time to do more sales.

But the biggest thing- like I said above- is that the fact that I was too involved in the business this year created consequences for the company and me. My effort and time was saturated by day to day operations so I overlooked the big picture. Not until now, mid August, have I had a chance to rewind and realize what happened to the entire season. I worked more than I have in my life but ended up with less in my pocket than I did when I used to work half the hours.

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