What Employees Expect From Your Contracting Business, and How You Can Deliver It

You probably haven’t missed the changing environment for employees in industries of all kinds. The labor shortage that construction has been dealing with for years is now gaining a lot of attention on the national stage. If you want to hire workers, you’re going to have to get them in the door with more than a smile. Here’s what you can do.

Higher Pay
It’s no mistake that if you want to get the broadest range of applicants and a higher likelihood that employees will stay once you hire them, you need to pay more. You don’t have to read the news often to know that the entire country is going through a labor shortage, and construction has been dealing with it for a decade. Right now, your ability to secure contracts and complete work is dependent on your success in getting and retaining employees. There are other factors that people look for in a work environment, but the pay is usually the first one on the list.

Benefits
Next on the list for a lot of people is benefits. When most people are dependent on their workplace for things like healthcare and retirement planning, you can expect prospective employees to ask you about it. Even if you can’t offer all the benefits of a larger business, it’s worth doing your research to see what you can offer in these categories at a minimum:

  • Healthcare
  • Paid vacation and sick leave
  • Retirement

The ultimate goal here is for employees to feel like working with you is a benefit, not something that takes away from their ability to take care of themselves, their families and their retirement. That way, any job change they make has to improve upon what they are already getting from your company.

Training/Education Reimbursement
Virtually everyone is on some kind of career path, and your business could be an attractive option to help employees on their way. When you hire people, you may be looking for evidence of education or certain credentials. You can encourage them to keep achieving. It’s tempting to believe that training employees only prepares them to leave, but in reality, the opposite is often true. Employees usually prefer to stay with a company that supports their growth, and providing training or education reimbursement is a good example of that. By comparison, employees are more likely to leave companies when they feel like they are being intentionally kept at the entry-level.

Sustainable Work Schedules
If you have ever had to work long hours just to pay the bills, you understand how unsustainable it can be. You’ve probably had at least one boss who took advantage of your willingness to please to make you come in on your day off or work hours past quitting time. Right now, employees are much less likely to tolerate these kinds of practices. They want to know that they have a defined time that they can expect for work, with the knowledge that the other hours belong to them. Offering a work schedule that they can manage and plan for makes it easier for them to make a commitment to you for the long term.

Remote Work Opportunities
Although the economy tends to swing back and forth between favoring businesses and favoring employees, the pandemic brought a particular aspect of work into the light. Many employees prefer to do at least some of their work in an office or workspace environment, but there are a growing number of people who want the option to work from home as well. Of course, as a contracting business owner, you may do most of your work at the job site. But your employees may appreciate the ability to handle online training or other administrative tasks from home.

Getting over construction’s labor shortage takes businesses that are willing to go the extra mile for their employees. To learn more about how to start a contracting business, visit CSLS today!

How to Build a Reliable Career in Construction

If you’ve been thinking about starting a career in construction, you should know that there is a lot of potential in the industry. But if you’re planning to stay in for the next 30 years or more, you’re going to need to make some good decisions from the beginning. Here are a few choices that can help set you up for a better experience.

Look for Gaps in Your Experience/History
When you’re first starting out, you may have the most flexibility in determining your future course. It’s a good idea to look at what you already have and determine how much you need to start building a career in construction. For example, most construction professionals need to have a high school diploma or GED. You may not need to have a significant amount of other experience or training, but it helps. Start researching what you’ll need in order to pursue the kinds of careers that you’re thinking about for the future. It’s better to have a plan in mind before you get too invested in the process.

Research Courses
One of the things that people love about construction is that there are so many things that you can learn, and so many different ways to do it. For example, if you’re looking to join a particular field and you know exactly which one is going to be right for you, you may be able to take educational courses or apply for apprenticeships that will give you extensive knowledge and experience by the end. But you can also take courses one at a time to learn a little bit more about the field and the job, so that you can determine whether or not it will be right for you. Don’t hesitate to get more information about fields that you find exciting or particularly interesting.

Consider Certifications
Although construction as an industry doesn’t always require a lot of training for entry-level jobs, you can still add to your résumé before you get started. Certifications may not take as long as licenses or degrees, and they may help you move toward a particular career. For example, OSHA offers a variety of certifications that can make you a more attractive candidate for certain construction jobs, even if they’re not the only things you need to have in order to get them.

Evaluate Possible Career Paths
When you start thinking about possible career paths, it’s important to choose options that will work for you years down the road. The last thing that you want is to discover that your chosen field is becoming obsolete, and you don’t know how to grow with it. Instead, look for fields with a lot of room for growth within the next 30 years, as well as demand for qualified professionals. You’ll have a better chance of finding a reliable career, as well as plenty of work to keep you busy at a good rate of pay.

Improve Other Skills
Like other industries, construction requires people to build a variety of skills that they can use throughout the workday. If your dream is to open your own contracting business, you’ll need multiple skills, such as:

  • Math and basic finance
  • Business communication
  • Basic use of technology

This is also a good time to evaluate what you need to be able to perform tasks within your chosen field every day. You might need to build your physical strength or stamina so that you can complete projects on time without burning yourself out.

Building a reliable career in construction starts with these goals. When you’re ready, you can count on us to help you prepare for the contractor licensing exam. To get started, visit CSLS today!

Is Your Contracting Business Ready for an OSHA Visit?

As an owner of a contracting business, you are expected to maintain certain levels of safety for yourself and anyone who works in the area. On occasion, OSHA may decide to conduct unannounced visits in certain regions based on injury reports and other data. You’ll be better off if you know what to do. Here are a few factors to keep in mind.

Keep Organized Records
One of the best things that you can do in advance of a visit from OSHA is to keep organized records about your daily activities. For example, if you have a specific interval for conducting safety drills or training sessions, you should have a verifiable record of those activities. In the event of accidents or injuries, you should follow all local guidelines for handling and reporting them. That way, if you are ever in a situation where an OSHA inspector shows up to your business unexpectedly, you do not have to scramble to provide them with information on their request.

Stay Current on Safety Regulations
It may seem like it goes without saying that as a business owner, you should stay current on all safety regulations related to your field. But the reason that some businesses get surprise OSHA inspections may be related to the way that they follow safety regulations. Keep in mind that the rules might change throughout your construction career. Formulate a plan to ensure that your employees receive adequate training, and participate in regular drills and safety audits. That makes it easier to confirm that your team is actually doing the work in a way that is most likely to minimize injury.

Designate a Point of Contact
If you have a business with a handful of employees, you should consider designating at least one person to be a point of contact for an OSHA inspector. This person should have access to your businesses policies and procedures, as well as detailed company records. They should be able to answer questions from the inspector about any activity relating to your business. It’s worth keeping in mind that, even if your business is very small, you may need a second person who can serve as a backup. In other words, you might expect to be this contact at all times, but you won’t always have a guarantee that you can be there at the time. You should have someone who can fill that role for you.

Ask for Information
When any visitor arrives at your place of business or at a job site, it’s routine to ask them for evidence that they have a logical and legal reason to be there, as well as the purpose for the visit. If someone arrives and says that they have been sent by OSHA to perform an inspection, you should ask them for identification and any other relevant documentation. Before they conduct the inspection, you may have an opportunity to speak with them about the reason for their visit. At that time, you should also notify your employees about the visit, so that they are aware that there is an inspector on-site.

Be Present During an Inspection
It’s easy to get nervous about an unexpected OSHA inspection, but it’s best if you stay in the moment. Inspectors perform inspections as a way of identifying possible risks or to gather information about past events. You will have a better result if you:

  • Participate fully during the inspection
  • Answer questions completely and honestly
  • Avoid trying to offer unnecessary information

If you’re not sure what you should or should not do, it’s a good idea to consult a lawyer about your rights and responsibilities. This won’t guarantee that you can avoid receiving a citation. But if you cooperate reasonably, you can minimize future trouble for yourself and your business.

OSHA inspections can be a source of anxiety, but they may happen at various points throughout your construction career. To learn more about what you can do to build a safe contracting business, contact CSLS today!

How to Make Long Nights Work for Your Contracting Business

The end of daylight savings has arrived, which means that you have some long nights ahead. Although long days are great for your contracting business, the absence of them doesn’t indicate problems. Here are a few ways you can use those long nights in your favor.

Start Early
Although the change in daylight hours happens in both morning and evening, you can still maximize your daylight hours by starting a bit earlier. Instead of waking up when it is already light outside, keep an eye on the sunrise and plan to get up at least a little earlier. That way, you are already at the job site and ready to go to take advantage of the maximum amount of daylight. If you’re not an early riser, or if you just have trouble getting up to an alarm, make minor changes in your routine. Adjusting your clock just 15 minutes earlier per day may make it much more reasonable to accept.

Switch Up Your Work Schedule
When the sun rises before you do, and sets long after you have finished work for the day, there’s no reason for you to adjust your schedule based on daylight hours. In the winter, you may be due for a change. Sometimes, coming up with a new plan to handle work during the day can give you a refresh that makes it easier to get everything done. For example, you might shift some of your administrative tasks to the late afternoon, instead of getting them done first thing in the morning.

Just make sure that you allow for enough break time. Schedule your breaks around natural transitions, especially if you’re still working after sunset. Stretch your muscles, eat a snack with protein, fat, and carbs, and adjust your work gear if it gets cold. That way, you don’t burn out and get too tired before you’re done.

Increase the Lighting
Although the sun is one of the most effective light sources you can use, it’s certainly not the only one. If you’re arriving and starting work in darkness or finishing the day after sundown, you’ll need more light. Consider different options based on the amount of lighting that you need for the space, as well as the precision that you’ll need. Brighter lights make it easier to focus, but they can also feel excessive or glaring in small spaces. Invest in a few battery-operated products, so that you can take some wherever you need to go on the job site.

Catch Up on Administration and Maintenance
The winter is often a slow season for contracting businesses, but that doesn’t mean that you won’t have anything to do. During the busy season, there are probably a lot of tasks that you find difficult to schedule, like reviewing your marketing strategy or catching up on equipment maintenance. Many contracting business owners choose to perform this upkeep during the slow season because it is easier to schedule it around other projects you have going. That way, you arrive in the spring with your business in better shape, ready to meet the needs of your clients.

Take Time Off
As a contracting business owner, you may feel the pressure to stay incredibly busy at all times. And during the busy season, it certainly is easy to let your schedule run away with you. But you need to keep it sustainable, or otherwise, you will burn out fast. Use the shorter days as an opportunity to maximize your productivity, and take breaks at night. This is also a great time to encourage your employees to take a vacation or participate in training.

Maximizing long nights takes a little practice, but you’ll get the hang of it. To get started building your construction career, visit CSLS today!

Why This Winter Is a Great Time to Start Your Construction Career

The last couple of years have been a whirlwind for all industries, construction in particular. Everyone has to rethink the way that they do things, with big benefits for those who take advantage of it early. If you’re starting to think about a change in career, now’s a great time to get started. Here are a few reasons that this winter may offer the change of a lifetime.

The Labor Shortage Is Getting Worse
Construction’s labor shortage may be starting to feel like a song that has been playing on repeat for about a decade. But now, other industries are starting to hear the song as if it were new and not seen in a generation. In essence, the labor shortage is everywhere. Contracting businesses are having a hard time finding skilled workers. Larger construction businesses are struggling to secure the services of subcontractors. And companies everywhere are finding that their employees are looking for a new career path. You could be one of them.

It’s an Employee’s Market
Changing jobs may feel like a big deal, much less changing careers. But if you were going to do it at any point in time this decade, now is highly beneficial. It’s an employee‘s market, which means that there are more companies looking for employees than there are people looking for jobs. It means that people planning a career change are in a better place to negotiate for higher pay, benefits, retirement options, and more. If you’re thinking about starting your own contracting business in a few years, you may have more flexibility to prepare for that.

You Have Time to Prepare
One concern that a lot of people have about changing careers is that they will wait too long and then miss out on the best opportunities. But frankly, you could have changed your career construction any time in the last 10 years and noticed a big improvement in your future prospects. With the worldwide labor shortage as it is, you probably have extra flexibility to prepare. That means if you want to save up so that you can focus on your studies, or look at your options for apprenticeship programs, it may be easier to do it now than it was even a couple of years ago.

Change Is Everywhere
The other thing about changing careers is that you have to tell everyone about it, and receive their feedback. At a time when practically everyone is considering an upgrade in their jobs, changing careers is going to feel quite normal to the people around you. As such, family members and friends, who might have cautioned you against leaving a reliable job a few years ago, maybe more understanding and even encourage you to do so now. Even if you’re just looking to get your foot in the door as you start to meet the requirements to become a licensed contractor, you’ll have more options right now.

Big Things Are Coming
The gradual end of a worldwide crisis makes a lot of people think about what they want from life and how best to get it. It’s creating changes in the construction industry, and they are going to be big. It’s time to make significant updates to infrastructure all over the country. Businesses are looking for ways to entice and keep employees while balancing their needs in a new world. Construction plays a significant role at all stages of this process. If you’re wanting to get in on it, you’ve rarely had a better time.

Starting your contracting business may be one of the best decisions that you make this winter. For expert guidance on what you’ll need, contact CSLS today!

What Can Be Done About Construction’s Supply Chain Problems?

Construction has had issues with the supply chain for at least a couple of years now. Although many industries are currently feeling the squeeze, it may be affecting construction worse than others. The good news is that experts are actively looking for solutions. Here are a few of their ideas.

Temporary Release of Stockpiled Materials
The United States keeps an emergency stockpile of certain types of materials. The amount and use of the stockpile is dictated largely by the executive branch of the federal government. By releasing certain amounts of raw building materials, the government can bypass some of the current delays in the supply chain. It’s not a permanent solution, as these supplies will run out eventually. But it can help to bolster the market so that contracting businesses can continue to get supplies while the manufacturers and shipping interests fix the problems causing delays.

Infrastructure Updates to Eliminate Shipping Backlogs
Ultimately, putting a bunch of new materials into the shipping routes won’t help much without coping with shipping backlogs. Right now, one of the biggest problems that many industries are having with supply consistency is shipping. Specifically, ships are facing significant delays in transferring their materials to a shipyard, and then delays in getting those containers on a truck or other vehicle. Even a few days’ worth of backlogs can turn into weeks ‘worth of delays in deliveries. Upgrading and expanding the shipyards, while providing for increased labor, can modernize the processes to make them work more quickly.

Increased Paths to Raw Materials
Fixing the problems with shipping is a major part of addressing the supply chain, but so is access to the raw materials in the first place. The supply chain is failing at several points, and some experts think it is unwise to focus too much on issues that come up toward the end of the chain. In short, they believe that it is important to find different ways to source raw materials and make sure that businesses can get them from more than one supplier, in different locations. That way, things like bad weather or a shipping delay in one port are less likely to cascade into problems for everyone.

Assistance to Supplying Countries
Improving access to raw materials may involve interacting with other countries and helping to fix these problems together. Although the U.S. produces a lot of raw materials for construction domestically, there are many countries in Central and South America and in Asia that manufacture raw goods for export to the U.S. When they get hit with supply chain issues, American businesses feel the pinch. Some experts recommend collaborating with and providing assistance to these countries, as a way of making the supply chain more stable for all.

Sharing Data About Consumption
In many ways, the supply chain problems are exacerbated by a lack of understanding about demand. Anyone who went to the grocery store and found empty shelves last year knows that demand can be a tricky thing to predict. Sometimes, demand rises because people are using more of a particular product. In times of unpredictability, demand can be outsized due to hoarding. By sharing data about consumption patterns with suppliers, some experts believe that manufacturers may be better able to meet that demand in a way that discourages hoarding.

Managing the supply chain takes a lot of experts. You’ll learn quickly how important it is, once you are a contracting business owner. For more information about the steps to opening your own contracting business, visit CSLS today!

How to Find the Best Employees for Your Contracting Business

In the middle of a labor shortage for construction, finding the best employees is a big deal. But where do you go to find them? And how do you know when you’ve made the right choice? If you know where to look, you can have a better chance of securing the best talent in the industry. Here are a few things you should know.

Look for Training Programs
Although many people get their start in construction with no formal training or education, local trade schools and other programs can be a great place to find new talent. There’s been a push in recent years to expand educational programs to help people interested in building a construction career. These programs may provide training or an apprenticeship to earn a certificate or even to become licensed contractors. By connecting with these programs, you may be able to get a sense for who is interested in working in construction, and the types of trades that entice them the most.

Go to Conferences
Ultimately, one of the best ways to get to know what’s happening in your local construction industry is to attend construction conferences. While you are there, you can network with other professionals and meet people who are looking to break into competitive fields. Conferences are a great way to find out what is new in the industry, especially issues concerning changing practices or technological innovations. Conferences also attract new people who are eager to find companies who support these new technologies. Give yourself some time to get to know the other attendees, and you might be delighted by the result.

Ask for Recommendations
Although there are lots of new ways that you can look for employees, it doesn’t hurt to ask for recommendations among regular clients or fellow contractors. You can even talk to friends and family, to see if they know anyone who is interested in getting involved with construction but isn’t sure how. Recommendations can be a great start because you already have a little bit of vetting done by someone you know and trust. Just make sure that the person doing the recommending is a reliable judge of character. You may not always get a lot of options, but it’s worth a try.

Publicize Your Expectations
It’s funny how some companies look to hire people without actually making it obvious that they want to do so. If you are actively searching out employees, make a job description and post it on popular job search websites. Provide plenty of information about what you expect from the job and what your company can offer to entice people to apply, like competitive wages or a solid benefits package. These days, people want the details before they decide whether or not they want to apply. The more information you can give them, the more likely they are to give you a chance.

Aim for Inclusion
For decades, construction has attracted workers from very specific demographics. But if you want to have access to a wider pool of possible candidates, you’re going to want to be as inclusive as you can. Be wary of job descriptions that imply that you’re looking for a very specific type of person. Instead, set reasonably objective requirements that don’t skew toward a particular demographic. Ask a relative or a friend who has a different background than you to review your hiring notice and let you know if it’s too exclusive. Opening up your hiring practices might lead more potential employees with varied experience and ideas that can help keep your business relevant years into the future.

Hiring great employees may seem difficult, but there are a few ways you could make it easier. For more information about what you’ll need to start your contracting business, contact CSLS today!

How to Take Better Photos in Your Contracting Business

On the construction site, there will be times when you need to take a few photographs to elaborate a point or to show progress. Although you might hire a professional photographer for the most important ones, on a daily basis, you probably don’t need to. But that doesn’t mean you can just snap a quick image and expect it to cover everything you need. Here are a few ways you can take better photos when you need it.

Upgrade Your Technology
Before you start taking pictures, it’s a good idea to evaluate the technology you’re using to take them. Camera technology can improve significantly over a couple of years. As such, if you’re relying on something that you bought in the 2000s, it may not be sufficient. It doesn’t mean that you have to buy the latest and greatest just to grab photos for your employees, however. Buy the best technology that you can afford in a format that you’re willing to learn how to use. If you’re not prepared to research different uses for lenses, point-and-shoot might be your best option.

Choose the Right Lighting
Finding the right time to take photos of progress on the construction site isn’t always easy. If the sun is right in your face, you may end up with a lot of glare. If it’s too early or late in the day, you might have to deal with a flash creating a similar problem. If your goal is clarity, look for times when you have these qualities:

  • Flat light, as you might see on a cloudy day
  • Minimal shadows concealing important details
  • Natural or artificial lighting positioned at an angle toward the item, not pointed dead-on
  • It may take some practice to figure out which lighting is best for each stage of the project.

Clear the Clutter
Even if you’re not staging photos for your clients or to add to your portfolio, you want to minimize distraction. Before you start snapping photos, take a moment to clean up the site. Clear away debris and waste. Move items like cables or boxes out of the way. It’s tempting to zoom in on your target so that you don’t have to do these extra steps. But if you come in too close, you may end up with a picture that has no context. It’s better to spend the time cleaning up and offering a relatively simple photo, than it is to complicate your life trying to avoid doing something you would have to do anyway.

Remember Perspective
If accuracy is more important than aesthetics, you should make sure that the picture provides the right perspective. Almost everyone has seen the recent trend in real estate, where property owners list pictures taken from an unusual perspective. Ideally, this approach is supposed to make a small room look larger. In practice, it can make a level room look like it belongs in a funhouse. If it is at all possible, try to take the photographs relatively close to the scene in question and not too far in the periphery. That way, the picture will still make sense to the person looking at it.

Hire a Professional
Taking good photographs is a skill that takes years to build. If you need to do more than snap a few photographs of your progress at the end of the day, you may want to consider hiring a professional. Images that you want to be able to show to future clients require an investment. Professional photographers already understand all of these complicated topics, and they can present your work in the most positive light. If it’s hard to imagine making the investment, just keep in mind that the images you post for public consumption are part of your brand. They should be good enough to last.

Providing high-quality images for employees and clients is a common part of running a contracting business. To learn more about what you need to get started, contact CSLS today!

5 Safety Tips You Might Miss in Your Contracting Business

When you do work for your contracting business, it’s common to follow the standard safety practices for each task. If you know that you are taking each step seriously, you can avoid injury and ensure that you get to the finish line with as little hassle as possible. However, there are other aspects of your business or personal safety that you might not think about as often. Here are five to remember.

Jobsite Security
If you’re working as a contractor on a jobsite, you need to make sure that the site will be safe and secure while you are there. It’s also important to consider how secure the site will be, if you have to leave equipment and materials for the day. Ask the property owner about security features of the site, including:

  • Fences
  • Surveillance equipment
  • Locked doors and gates
  • Pest deterrents

Protection is important, and you want to make sure that somebody is attending to it. You don’t want to enter the jobsite and find an unfamiliar person any more than you would like to find a snake or a mountain lion.

Construction Vehicle Safety
When you think about safety, it’s tempting to focus on the safety tasks you need to complete onsite, whether that’s a client property or your own workspace. But you should also think about the safety of the transportation you take to get to and from work, especially if you use your own vehicle. Many people find that they forget about vehicle upkeep, until something breaks. Schedule regular maintenance for your work vehicle, and more often if you use it to travel to client sites regularly. Replacing the brakes when appropriate could be the difference between life and death.

Guest and Visitor Safety
For yourself and your employees, your business probably has a set of safety practices that everyone needs to follow. You might offer training and have everyone practice routines on a regular basis, to ensure that they remain sharp. Of course, all of these practical tasks do not relate to onsite guests or visitors. If you’re going to be having someone come to the site, whether it is a property owner, client, or inspector, you must ensure that they know the possible hazards. Confirm that you can provide adequate safety equipment for anyone who will be visiting the site on a given day.

Visibility
When you are engaged in a particular task, it may be difficult for you to think about all the things that are going on around you. And yet, that is a common source of jobsite injury. A worker is using a piece of equipment, not realizing that there is another worker around the corner or behind them. Increasing visibility and awareness is an important task to ensure the safety of the entire site. Increase lighting and add windows or mirrors as needed to ensure that people can see what they are doing and the environment around them.

Information Security
You may not think of the security of your business information as a safety task, but it certainly is. Your business’s ability to keep your information, and that of your clients, safe is a matter of security. Without it, you could be at risk for identity theft, property theft, as well as other personal threats. Make sure that you are keeping sensitive information in a secure place. If you’re not sure how to do that in a digital format, you may want to search for companies that can manage your data and encrypt it so that people cannot break in and gather that information for other uses.

Keeping your business and everyone in it safe sometimes calls for the unexpected. With these tips, you’ll have a better idea of what you should do. To discover the benefits of running your own contracting business, contact CSLS today!

5 Things You Learn From Friends That Can Help in Your Contracting Business

When you think about starting a business, it’s easy to wonder how you could possibly build the right skills. The good news is that your whole life experience can be a resource to help you succeed. For example, your experiences spending time with friends can help set you up to work well with clients, employees and other contractors. Here’s how.

How to Solve Problems as a Team
Building and maintaining friendships gives you a lot of insight into what you’ll need to solve problems in your contracting business. Even if your business has you as the only employee, you’re still going to need to find ways to collaborate. In many cases, you’ll need to negotiate with clients to find the right solution to the problem. And once you have a few employees or subcontractors, you’ll just be extending those skills. The ability to find common goals, make sure that you’re all on the same page, and ensure that everyone’s needs are met is a crucial part of your long-term business success.

Ways to Overcome Different Communication Styles
You and your friends might have similar preferences for communication, but it’s likely that they don’t match up perfectly. Everyone knows someone who never responds to text messages, just as they know someone who sends about a million of them every day. Communicating with clients isn’t just about using the right language. You also need to choose the correct format. Figuring out how to talk with your friends without generating unnecessary conflict can give you a lot of insight into what your clients may expect.

How to Resolve Conflicts Without Losing Your Cool
When you’re among friends, you may feel much more comfortable getting competitive or expressing your unpopular opinions. But your friends are also more likely to call you out on it. This type of conflict is great in preparing you for your contracting business. When you have a conflict with a client, you must be far more careful in your tone and word choice. As such, you have to find ways to keep your cool, even if you’re not feeling it in the moment. Friendly debates, and even the ones that are not so friendly, provide an excellent source of practice in maintaining your position without steamrolling your opponent.

How to Maintain Good Boundaries
Good friendships are often built on a foundation of mutual respect. Mutual respect requires boundaries. Sometimes, the experiences that you have with friends that are good or not so good can help you to figure out the best way to engage with clients. For example, if you have a friendship that doesn’t have mutual respect or boundaries, you may feel like you are constantly compromising to please the other person. As a business owner, you have to be able to set good boundaries or your clients may run right over you. Learning what works and what doesn’t in your friendships set you up for better success when your income is on the line.

The Value of Commitment
The people that you consider your best friends earn that position by making a commitment to you. You earn that role by doing the same. In business, the ability to make a commitment and stick to it is vital. Without it, your clients can’t trust you and you may not be able to trust them, either. Commitment isn’t always easy, and it’s far better to pick up that lesson outside of a business setting. Learning the value of a commitment, and the responsibilities that you accept by making one, will help you become a better business owner.

You can pick up a lot of business skills from your friends, but you can’t get all of them that way. For expert training in preparation for the contractor licensing exam, visit CSLS today!