Part of being a business owner is being a leader. While leadership comes easy to some, to others it can be difficult. Here are five ways you can improve as a leader today:
1. Take an interest in your employees.
You need to be involved with your employees. If they have a problem, you need to work with them to find a solution. You hired talent, now you need to nurture that talent in your employees. Ways to improve work and life for your employees should remain top of mind. Colin Powell may have said it best, “The day the soldiers stop bringing you their problems is the day you stopped leading them. They have either lost confidence that you can help them or concluded that you do not care. Either case is a failure of leadership.”
2. Be open to a new way of looking at and doing things.
To be a great leader you need to be flexible and in tune with what is going on around you and you should be constantly looking for ways to improve your business.
3. Set the standards with yourself.
Do not demand perfection, the best leaders inspire greatness. They do this by holding themselves to high standards.
4. Communicate, communicate, communicate
This is one of the most fundamental parts of being a great leader. Being a great communicator starts with being a great listener.
5. Teach and release
Being a great leader requires that you teach your employees what they need to know and then you get out of the way and let them do it themselves. They should know you’ll be there for support, but ultimately they have the ability and your trust to get what needs to be done, done. It’s finding the balance between being in the trenches beside your employees and leading from in front.
To learn more about The Dwyer Group Code of Values, business systems or to become a part of our franchise family, click here or fill out the information form to the side.
Entrepreneur Magazine recently listed The Dwyer Group as one of their Top Innovative Franchises. The Dwyer Group, the parent company for seven home service brands, was recognized on the list for a program initiated by Dina Dwyer-Owens, Co-Chairman of The Dwyer Group.
“It is an honor to be listed among the top innovative franchises by Entrepreneur Magazine,” Heather McLeod, Director of Franchise Sales Marketing at The Dwyer Group, said. “We are dedicated to helping people achieve their personal and professional goals in the service industry through franchising.”
Entrepreneur’s Our Top Innovative Franchises contained 15 new and 15 established innovators. The Dwyer Group was among the established innovators.
The “Women in the Trades “ (WIT) program, for which The Dwyer Group was recognized, offers scholarships to women to attend trade or technical schools so they can get service jobs or own their own businesses. The goal of the scholarship is to offer women the opportunity break professional boundaries and pursue life-long goals in the service trades.
As of Dec. 31, 2013, The Dwyer Group had 1,596 franchisees worldwide, selling 120 new franchises year to date and has been franchising since 1981. In addition to the WIT program, The Dwyer Group has programs for Veterans and Public Protectors interested in becoming a business owner through franchising.
The Dwyer Group offers franchises of seven home service brands, Aire Serv®, Glass Doctor®, Mr. Appliance®, Mr. Electric®, The Grounds Guys®, Mr. Rooter® and Rainbow International®.
About WIT Scholarship: Interested candidates can apply for $1,500 scholarship for a trade or technical school for any of seven specialties: HVAC, plumbing, electrical repair, glass repair and replacement, appliance repair, restoration or landscaping. The scholarships are available to women working towards a career in the trades, to students studying for a career in the trades or to front-line female employees at franchise locations of any of The Dwyer Group service brands. The scholarship is open to women 18 or older and covers tuition, books, travel and/or fees at any trade or technical school in the U.S. or Canada.
Rainbow International had a shining second quarter of franchise sales in 2014. Rainbow International announced the addition of 10 new franchise locations. In addition to these new locations, four existing franchise locations have expanded their service territory, increasing the availability of their services to customers.
“We are always pleased to grow our service network by developing quality franchise locations,” Mark Welstead, president of Rainbow International, said.
Rainbow International welcomes the following new franchise owners:
Troy Reese, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Jeffrey Finch, Conklin, New York
Patrick Patel, Ventura California
Jason Opp, Fairbanks, Alaska
Katherine Sheridan, Monterey, California
Dat Nguyen, Warwick, Rhode Island
Kevin McSweeney, Boxborough, Massachusetts
Craig O’bringer, Celina, Ohio
Phillip Miller, Goshen, Indiana
Scott Morrow, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Patrick Patel also owns a Mr. Rooter(R) franchise in Santa Maria, California. He opened his Mr. Rooter franchise in 2011.
“We are pleased with our growth this quarter,” Heather McLeod, Director of Franchise Sales Marketing at The Dwyer Group(R), said. “As a company, we love helping people achieve their goals through business ownership and these new franchisees are warmly welcomed.”
Rainbow International franchise owners have access to training in cutting-edge water and smoke restoration techniques and support from IICRC-certified staff leaders. In addition, franchise owners are equipped with marketing support, access to national accounts, vendor rebates and incentives, as well as, a dedicated franchise consultant.“Each new Rainbow franchisee’s goal is to offer top quality service, by bringing the highest standards in restoration to their area,” Welstead said.
Growing your landscape business?
It could hurt you.
But, not if you are prepared.
Avoid these five common mistakes, and growing your landscape business will be much easier and a lot less painful:
1.Growing the company before systems are in place.
Success in the landscape industry, or really any industry, requires a system that allows your business to function without continuous micromanaging. You cannot grow your landscape business without successful systems in place. With these systems in place your company should have the means to add additional full time crews, grow and produce optimum results. You do not want to be creating systems through trial and error while managing the day to day problems, it’s next to impossible. Sometimes the best way to be successful is to be prepared to do the work before actually doing the work. Without systems in place the transition from being a hands on owner to becoming business owners that hire people to create projects at the same quality, while you still earn the same profits, will be much harder than it needs to be.
2. Growing too fast.
Growing your landscape business is a great thing. Until it isn’t. It boils down to supply and demand. If you can’t meet the needs of your growing business, it’s going to be a constant uphill battle to regain the balance and control you need in a business.
3. Not identifying all-star employees.
By identifying and leveraging these people, you can provide a more entrepreneurial environment and pay structure; you can grow your landscape business while reducing your personal workload. You don’t want to lose all star employees, which generally happens when they don’t see what their future in the industry could be. If you don’t do this, then chances are that you will be surrounded by employees that work only for a paycheck, which could reduce your company expansion and add to your personal workload.
4. Trying to operate without the right equipment.
Equipment is expensive, we get it. But, this is one area where it is best not to be cheap or “make do” with tools. That doesn’t mean you should go bankrupt buying the biggest and baddest tools you can find. Finding a balance between high quality equipment and price is difficult for any business owner.
5. Hiring the wrong employees.
All business owners have been in this situation at least once. It’s one thing to hire the wrong employees for your landscape business; it’s another to hang onto them. With landscaping skills being in demand, highly usable and the current state of affairs in the business world you need to hire the best employees that you can, because you can’t afford to let any of them go.
The Grounds Guys® is a great example of a landscape company that continually survives, possibly due in large part to the systems that they have in place. These systems help franchisees avoid making all five of these mistakes. All franchisees get business training, access to a network of vendors and a trained consultant for extra guidance.
If you would like more information about The Grounds Guys, then please feel free to fill out the contact form to the side. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog, so you don’t miss a single business tip!
Are you celebrating Easter with your employees? Why not? Celebrating holidays like Easter can make a positive impact on your employees, no matter how small the celebration. Easter is a great way to have some fun around the office, create different office traditions, increase employee motivation and employee loyalty. So here are a few ideas to help you celebrate the holiday in your office.
Easy Easter Baskets
Easter baskets are a great way to celebrate the holiday with employees or customers. Small baskets full of candy, homemade treats, and gifts let employees and customers know you are thinking of them during this holiday. Small basket ideas include: chocolate eggs or bunnies, cookies, bunny ears and plastic eggs.
A business-wide egg hunt is a fun way to take a break during the Easter holidays. Fill plastic eggs with candy or even coupons from local businesses. Egg hunts bring out the competitive side in everyone, so a fun twist on a regular egg hunt would be dividing into teams and having a grand prize for the team with the most eggs. You may even want to put a special “day-off from work” in an egg.
Easter Pot Luck Lunch
Host a pot luck lunch for your employees the Friday before Easter to encourage team building and camaraderie. Employees can bring their favorite Easter dish or dessert and combine food for everyone to have a fun Easter party. This is a way to bring the office together to celebrate and have fun while at the office.
At The Dwyer Group®, we look to not only work hard but also to have fun in the process. Easter is one great way to let employees know they are valued, ease the everyday rush of the workday, and even show customers that your company is a business that cares about people.
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It’s hard to find a career that provides the same level of the freedom and control that owning a business can offer, but Ben Goergen came face to face with the reality of being the sole owner and operator of his business with just one misstep. Ben soon discovered that a franchise could do more than increase his revenue, streamline his operation, and provide operations and marketing support. More importantly, he said, “It saved my business.”
“I felt it all the way up into the back of my knee. I thought I had snapped my Achilles,” said Ben. “I thought it had snapped and recoiled into the back of my leg. I was scared. I was absolutely panicked. So, I slowly put my foot down. Everything was fine, but I thought, man, is that a precursor to what could happen?”
For one very long moment, Ben was concerned about his personal health and the health of his business. Thankfully, his injury was relatively minor…this time. Yet, the incident gave him a whole new perspective about his business and what could have happened to it if the worst had happened that day.
“The accident just stopped my heart, and I started thinking about it,” said Ben. “I needed to create something that if I were to go down I would have a business that could survive without me. My business was completely and utterly dependent on me. I didn’t have anybody else that could manage the business like I do, so I had to close for a whole week after the accident.”
At that moment Ben realized that if he ever suffered a serious injury forbidding him to work, his business would have no chance of recovering. It was at that moment that Ben decided that he needed to make the move to something bigger than himself. Ben realized he needed to pursue another business path that yielded more employees and a larger support system. In the end, he found Glass Doctor®.
“Coming down to [corporate headquarters], I was expecting to learn about the support systems, the help, and the structure that I didn’t know about,” said Ben. “It’s not that I haven’t found that, but I’m more surprised by all the other stuff that I found out about the people who work at Glass Doctor and The Dwyer Group®. Now that I’ve met the people of Glass Doctor and I’ve seen their hearts and sincerity and values, I’m completely and utterly floored.”
“I have the marketing team working for me and the operations team working for me,” Goergen said. “All of these people working to help me succeed. You have hundreds of incredibly successful professionals with years of experience in every facet of the business as your support team. How can that not be a good thing?”
With over 100 years of combined experience between the members of the Glass Doctor support team, Glass Doctor offers opportunities to small business owners looking for a supportive business environment. Whether you’re just like Ben, one accident away from shutting down, or even an established business owner looking for ways to improve sales or streamline your business so that you have more control over your life, Glass Doctor may be able to give you the support that you need. Fill out the form on the right side of the page to be connected with a business specialist who can help you get started today.
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Having a website that is mobile friendly is no longer about making a few more sales; it’s become a critical component of creating strong brands.
A study conducted by Google on mobile use in the US found:
96% of consumers have encountered a website that did not have mobile in mind.
75% prefer a mobile site.
67% said that when they visit a mobile friendly site they are more likely to buy a site’s product or service.
50% said that even if they like the business they will use them less often if the website isn’t mobile friendly.
52% said that a bad mobile said made them less likely to engage with the company.
48% said that if a site didn’t work on mobile it made them feel like the company didn’t care about their business.
The numbers are very sobering, and it’s apparent that mobile friendly websites are a necessity to be a successful competitor in the marketplace.
Curious if your brand is meeting this need? An easy way to check if your business website is mobile friendly is to visit the page via your smartphone.
3 key ideas to remember in making a mobile friendly website:
- Don’t let your customers get lost. Having a place where users can click to call your business and find your address easily is a necessary first step. If they can’t find you, you’ve lost them. Literally and figuratively.
- Easily clickable links. Links should be large enough that they can be easily clicked by hand or trackball.
- Say no to thumb fatigue. Limiting content is helpful as most do not want to read a large block of text on a small screen. Also, limit the number of times they must input information into a textbox. Nobody wants to spend five minutes filling in multiple text boxes with their thumbs.
With the ever-growing numbers of smartphone users, businesses should consider adapting their websites to mobile friendly versions. This requires an investment of time and money for business owners.
Making your website mobile friendly makes it future friendly. By adapting your website for mobile use you are positioning your business to meet the needs of a base of customers who are already familiar and very comfortable with mobile browsing and emerging technology.
Making a mobile friendly website requires time and money. But, franchisees that purchase a franchise system from The Dwyer Group ®have someone to help them with this so their time and money can be applied to more important aspects of business.
If you would like to learn more about purchasing a franchise, fill out the contact form and someone will be in contact with you shortly. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog, you don’t want to miss out!
With more than three decades of HVAC and plumbing experience under his belt, John Goldberg knows the ups and downs of the HVAC business, but like many in the HVAC industry, in 2008, John felt the heavy weight of a bad economy on his business. In a recent interview John explains his experience becoming Aire Serv® of Southwestern New York and how the franchise assisted him in bringing his business back from the brink.
What was your business like before expanding as an Aire Serv?
Before Aire Serv, we had traveled through the ups and downs of business. The word we used for going broke was “downsizing.” By 2010, I was in the field with a helper and we had a girl that answered the phone one day a week. It’s amazing how hard we worked for our little bit of sales. But it’s all we could do; it was all only one guy could do.
Since joining Aire Serv, it has helped us rebuild our business. Today I have 5 technicians, 2 people in the office, a sales person—the home comfort designer, and my wife, Tiffany, who does our marketing. We just took a photo of our team the other day and there are 9 people in it!
What made you decide you wanted to start your own business?
I would say an ambitious personality. I want to control my own schedule. That’s what drives me today is the ability to make my own decisions, be an entrepreneur—control my finances, my future, on a day-to-day basis.
How did you hear about Aire Serv?
Early on we were a new-construction-based plumbing and HVAC company, and in 2008, we hit THE WALL. I decided at that time that we needed to transition into a service maintenance and replacement business. We had actually tried some other things before Aire Serv. We had worked with some consultants, but hadn’t been able make it happen on our own. Our switch to Aire Serv, all started with a phone call and a simple conversation with an Aire Serv Franchise Developer.
*Get in contact with the Aire Serv Franchise Developer for your area by filling out the form on the right side of the page.
What made you decide to become a part of Aire Serv?
There were several steps before I decided to go with Aire Serv. When I attended Orientation, I talked with other HVAC contractors there looking at the franchise. We all had a protective curtain up. However, we all talked about the same things. We all had the same problems and pains in our businesses. Aire Serv seemed to offer the solutions we were looking for.
What recommendations do you have for someone interested in Aire Serv?
I’ll be honest. Joining Aire Serv was probably one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. It’s not easy. But Aire Serv, by far, is the best thing that has happened to us. The hardest thing to do is make the decision to go with it. Once that choice is made, you strap on your helmet and it’s game time. If I made a mistake, it was that I waited too long to become a part of Aire Serv.
What we are trying to do this year—drill down with a laser focus—is lead generation for replacement sales. That’s our daily effort: find places for our sales people to go to give presentations. Aire Serv is at the core of the business, helping achieve our goals.
Would you like to expand like John? An Aire Serv may still be available for your area. You can receive more information by filling out the form on the right side of the page, or visit our website to learn more about us at www.AireServFranchise.com.
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