Spring is often thought of as a season of renewal. In the Midwest, the cold weather fades away, spring rains bring green grass and flowers and you can just feel a sense of positivity in the air. So while 2012 may already be well underway, I’d like you consider the start of spring a fresh start for you as well. As such, below are six things we should all stop doing through the next three quarters of 2012.
1. Stop believing the construction industry will come back to where it was in 2006 anytime soon.
A return to those levels is off in the horizon, if it even exists at all. We need to accept what we have and make the most of it.
2. Stop depending on others to fix industry problems. Fix them yourself.
Think about what you can do to benefit your company and the industry as a whole, whether that’s a hard look at quality, branching out to provide products that specifiers may not consider “precast” products, or actively promoting your business using all the tools available today.
3. Stop believing everyone in Washington doesn’t have a clue except your guy and realize there is a huge, systemic lack of courage and leadership.
I have close acquaintances with opposite political ties, and one thing we can agree on is the situation in Washington is dire. Apathy is no longer an option if we want a productive government that truly represents the needs of the country and its people.
4. Stop waiting for the phone to ring.
I recently read a Thomas Friedman column in the New York Times titled “Average is Over.” It states, “Everyone needs to find their extra – their unique value contribution that makes them stand out in whatever is their field of employment.” I couldn’t agree more, and feel average is over for companies as well. If your company doesn’t find its “extra,” whether that’s thinking of complete solutions, investigating new markets and products, stepping out of its comfort zone and the traditional jobs it bids, or making the business easier to find* you’re in danger of becoming average.
*Hint: that’s no longer the yellow pages.
5. Stop thinking you’re just in the precast concrete business.
Look at your current products and think about complete solutions by identifying the peripheral products you can provide. Specifiers are more likely to go to the one-stop-shop. Make it easy for them.
6. Stop blaming the economy.
Like I said, the economy isn’t going anywhere in a hurry. It’s what we have, so rather than sit back and complain, take action and make your business the most attractive, quality, diverse, and complete solution it can be – and then get out there and promote it in every way available.
I think we all know what to do when life gives us lemons, and nothing is more refreshing in the spring than a tall glass of lemonade.