Working as a contractor in Massachusetts, as elsewhere, requires certain skills in order for a business to be successful. A combination of expanding technical skills and personal skills is needed for Massachusetts contractors to be successful in their businesses.
Improving Project Management Skills
Timeliness and good budgeting are crucial skills for success. A contractor must be able to come in under or at budget, have materials delivered in a timely manner and of sufficient quantity to get the job done. Other than unforeseen weather delays, customers expect projects to be completed on time, without cost overruns.
Improving Construction Skills
Keeping up with the latest trends in construction, such as using a tablet to access plans, materials and monitor workers instead of using a construction trailer and learning the latest in green technology to apply to projects is important. With new drone applications for construction projects, solutions for fleet management to lower costs and taking advantage of 4D technology to follow building construction and delays in real time, new opportunities are out there to offer the latest cost-saving and construction techniques, By keeping up with new trends, a contractor can build a successful business by being able to offer more to a client.
Improving People Skills
The ability to communicate well is one of the most important qualities necessary to be a successful contractor. Talking with clients, inspectors, architects, employees and suppliers is an integral part of the job. Miscommunication can lead to wrong orders, delays and other misunderstandings that can undermine a project. By making more of an effort to listen and ask questions to ensure complete understanding, a contractor avoids potential problems and can spend less time problem solving.
Improve Negotiating Skills
Having good negotiating skills can mean the difference in whether a contractor gets a job or it goes to someone else. Sales skills come as a result of being great in core competencies, including effective, friendly communication, lots of research into the project, best alternatives and the ability to quickly and efficiently work out problems. Define in advance how you can do the job better and at a lower cost. However, take into account your marketing position and what you must earn on a project in order to make a reasonable profit. Your best alternatives come into play when you can’t strike a deal. Having an alternative offer that is ready to present puts a contractor in a better position to be chosen for the project. Last but not least, present a friendly, cooperative attitude when negotiating. A contractor who appears difficult and solemn may be less likely to get the job.
Ensure a Contingency Fund
This is where some contractors drop the ball and find themselves without the wherewithal to take on a project they really want. While it can be tempting to spend contract earnings, not having a reserve can be a problem if a Massachusetts contractor can’t find work for awhile or weather conditions put projects on hold. Setting back a percentage from each job can help build a cushion for those times when work is not available.
Keep Up With Continuing Education
Contractors with a CSL license in Massachusetts are required to complete continuing education courses. The hours needed depend on the license a contractor is holding. PDH Contractor Academy offers 6, 10 and 12-hour online courses, so a Massachusetts contractor can complete continuing education requirements in the most convenient and efficient way possible. Once you have successfully completed the course you need, we will supply you with a certificate, which you can take with you for your license renewal. Browse courses by state to get started.