A SUMMARY OF HUNDREDS OF INTERVIEWS WITH ASPIRING CONCRETE LIFTING AND LEVELING ENTREPRENEURS & TIPS FOR SUCCESS
I have wanted to write this blog for years. Finally Annie and Jeff gave me the go ahead.
It is hard to believe, but for approaching a decade I have been presenting marketing ideas at the monthly HMI Discovery and Training Seminar. The intimate nature of the seminar experience has allowed me to sit down over lunches with hundreds and hundreds of: aspiring entrepreneurs, husbands and wives, fathers and sons, spray foamers, historic mudjackers and great people from all over the world in a number of current vocations to voluminous to list. In each of these interactions I ask 2 basic questions: why did you come here and are you learning what you came to learn.
Quietly and surreptitiously I have been keeping notes on these interactions and the answers to the WHY. Below is nearly a decade summary of WHY people come to the HMI seminar.
- BE MY OWN BOSS – This answer is an overwhelming #1 where people are looking to control their own lives, income and a business that lets them be and one person owner operator or grow to unlimited size.
- THE MARKET NEED – Unlike decorative concrete work, concrete lifting and leveling is not a discretionary expense/service for most. The American Disabilities act defined trip hazards and growth in litigation has catapulted the repair service. Many feel the business is recession resistant for this very reason.
- EASIER WORK – The introduction of polyurethane systems changed the business. Mudjacking works but the physical effort utilizing polyurethane systems is greatly reduced.
- LOW COST OF ENTRY – Many had researched countless options for franchises and other business opportunities. In the end the $50k+ or $20k+ cost of entry for a polyurethane system or mudjacking system respectively, is on the lower end of ALL IN capital commitments to enter a new business.
- SCALE-ABILITY CONTROL – Some were looking to take on the world in multiple markets. Some were looking to provide the service part time to supplement other work or add an additional service to an existing business. In every scenario the flexibility of the HMI model allowed them to make the decision of size, commitment and scale at any time without concern.
- HMI REPUTATION– Most had done exhaustive research on options before attending the HMI training seminar. What they heard and liked was:
- Family Owned
- Four Decades of Experience (TRUE EXPERTISE)
- Continually evolving new offerings
- Commitment to Free Service
It is nearly impossible in a short blog to summarize GLOBALLY how to be successful as an entrepreneur. However, in anticipation of a conference call with Jeff at HMI last week I scanned an article from ENTREPRENEUR MAGAZINE worth summarizing (Read HERE>>)
The article, authored by Bill Nuti, CEO and Chairman of NCR, states that to be successful entrepreneurs need to:
- Embrace Disruption
- Become A Team Player on A Diverse Team
- Define Your Vision and What Success Looks Like
- Train Everyday
- Have Fun
Bill Nuti did a better job than I have done in capsulizing efficiently subjects I have been writing about for decades. A thread that is consistent in his narrative, although unstated explicitly, is embrace CHANGE.
As I internalized Mr. Nuti words I could not help thinking back to a day years ago where I put up a slide at an INC MAGAZINE conference stating:
“IF YOU HAVE NOT CHANGED ANYTHING IN YOUR BUSINESS IN THE LAST 90 DAYS CHECK YOUR PULSE. YOU MAY BE DEAD AND DON’T EVEN KNOW IT.”
Paul DelFino is a principal of the consulting firm Opportunity Inc. For nearly two decades he has assisted entrepreneurs in growing their businesses, responding to economic downturns and merger and acquisition activity. He has consulted with HMI and RaiseRite for nearly two decades. His publications include “Avoiding Skewed Entrepreneurial Strategies” available from all on line booksellers.