PCA Articles

What They DON’T Tell You About Scaling Your Painting Business

What They DON’T Tell You About Scaling Your Painting Business

Note: This is only for business-minded, entrepreneurial painting contractors who want to grow their business beyond themselves – to have a business that doesn’t rely on them. A business that generates income for you without you having to do everything. If you love being on the tools and don’t aspire to scale your business, then this is not for you.

Quick note about me – I’ve now helped over 300 painting contractors scale their businesses. It’s what I do. Since selling my painting business (which at the time was doing over $150k/mo and $50k/mo profit) while I was completely removed), I’ve been helping painters with their own business systems for the last 10 years. Now through the PCA, I want to help painters avoid the common pitfalls I typically see others make when attempting to grow their painting companies.

Here are 5 rules to follow if you want to scale your painting business quickly.

To grow your company, you need to STOP painting.

It might seem counterproductive to some of you, the idea that you need to take a step back from site to grow your company. It can feel really productive to be on site making progress on a job, but for those who want to grow their companies significantly, it’s one of the least productive things they can do.

You should be instead prioritizing your time to focus on the higher impact activities. Sales, marketing, hiring, training, and administration. Your time on site should be limited to training your team and talking to customers. As your business grows, your role within it will change and evolve. Even those tasks, eventually, can and should be delegated as you continue to grow your company.

“Your ability to grow your company is limited only by your ability to delegate more and more complex tasks.” – Mike Gore-Hickman

You are in the customer-service industry first, and the painting industry second.

You’re not just in the painting industry; you’re in the customer-service industry. Because of that, you need to overhaul your customer service standards at every interaction, and go above and beyond. This can include how you answer the phone, what you and your painters wear, the paperwork you use, what your vehicles look like, how you structure your meetings with the client, how responsive you are, etc.

The customer-service threshold has been set so low for painting contractors, that for you to provide an “outstanding experience” for your clients is very easy. But you do have to try, and you do have to make it a priority.

Make sure you always do what you say you are going to do, always be on time, always be well dressed and clean, always be professional, don’t smoke or use profanity in front of the customer (or at all), take care of yourself, keep your vehicles clean (inside and out), and your customers will notice.

You need need NEED systems for EVERYTHING.

I’m sure you’ve heard that phrase before. “Your business needs systems.”

But what does that even mean?

A system is basically a process, procedure, checklist, step-by-step guide on how to accomplish a various task. Ultimately, you want to get to a point where you have systems for every single repeatable task in your business.

You’ll need systems for sales, marketing, production, customer service, financials, hiring, and anything else you can think of. Here’s the test for whether or not your system is good enough: If you had to pass off a responsibility to someone else, could you do it by just handing them a checklist? Even though in reality you’ll accompany a handoff with training and explanation, you want the documented process to be thorough enough where a simple process handoff would work.

I’ve worked with over 400 painting contractors, and we’ve seen a lot of (good and bad) processes in that time. We also know all of the processes that you might need in your business. If you want my full (near) exhaustive list of business systems needed in a painting business, simply text “systems” to 747-298-6776 and we’ll send it over. It’ll be a great place to start if you’re wanting to start tackling the systems build out in your business.

Everything can (and should) be distilled to a metric, and tracked.

As a leader of a growing organization, you need to start making all of your decisions by the numbers. Every aspect of your business can (and should) be distilled into metrics that you can track. You need to keep tabs on key indicators like cost per lead, cost per estimate, closing rate, average job size, painter productivity, profit margin, paint cost, labor cost, etc. By consistently monitoring these metrics, you’ll gain invaluable insights to spot areas for improvement, and make much better data-oriented decisions in your business. Following this rule will ensure you don’t make emotional decisions which may negatively impact your business.

You can’t do it alone.

So often, painting contractors (and business owners everywhere) think that they can scale their businesses on their own. Virtually every successful business owner of all time has had a business coach and learned from those before them. It’s almost impossible to navigate the intricacies of scaling a business without having a business coach and knowing what to do. This is especially important for those who haven’t had any formal business training.

Remember, being a good painter is NOT the same thing as being a good business owner. Just because you can paint as good as any of them, does not mean you know how to grow a painting company effectively and successfully.

If you are serious about your business growth, we’re offering free 1-1 Painter Growth Strategy Calls for PCA members, to help you identify your blindspots and biggest opportunities in your business. Oftentimes simply having an outsider look at your business will get you incredible insights and help you work through your roadblocks much quicker.

If you want to schedule your free Painter Growth Session for PCA members, please click here now.

On the call, we’ll give you a customized plan for scaling your painting company.

You will also learn:

  • The exact reason your business has not been able to scale;
  • How to set (and achieve) realistic and meaningful business goals
  • How to improve your sales process and start selling at 50%+
  • How to get residential AND commercial leads on demand; and
  • Exactly what YOU need to do to scale your painting company in the next 3-6 months.

Click here to book your Painter Growth Strategy Call now.

Mike Gore-Hickman
Founder, PainterGrowth.com
+1 (747) 298-6776

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