2012: Planning the Start of Something Great

Change and planning are unbelievably important to greater success. Doing things differently from what you’re accustomed to doing isn’t always easy – but it can be the start of something great.

Many rental companies are in need of a much more formal and structured way of operating. What a hassle to be dealing with the same recurring and profit-robbing problems over and over again. Some of the hassles of the rental businesses can’t be helped, however, some of these frustrations can be corrected or reduced with the right planning and formal structure. So, one of your most important initiatives this year should be to have a comprehensive strategic plan that includes a vast array of very specific steps the company has vowed to take in order to lead to much greater success. Too much “winging it” can cause enormous problems and can make your business only marginally profitable. If this sounds like your rental business, then it’s time for your business to become more professional. It’s likely that your employees need more structure than they are receiving.

For example, some of you are at a point in your career where you want to prepare up-and-coming managers for leadership. Even though they are going to bring the latest technology to your business with their proficiency with computers, smart phones and social media – they likely lack the formal structure and comprehensive strategies needed to take the business forward. It is not wise to expect that the same methods of growing a rental business that worked so well for you in the early years of your business development would work well for your up-and-coming managers. Their training needs are different now. It’s important to be willing to make these major modifications to their preparation. Serious, formal management training in areas such as organization and leadership for the future is an indispensable ingredient for growing revenue, for enhancing efficiency and for ending up with significant gains to the bottom line. Some of you know that you are in dire need of some of these changes but you don’t know how to make it happen in your company. You are too close to your own operation to be expected to make the significant changes needed.

The process of better planning and getting truly organized begins with an outside expert to help with an objective audit and evaluation of the company, practices, personnel, etc. Some of you are aware that you need outside professional help in these areas but it is difficult for those in a do-it-yourself oriented business to seek outside help.

It is important to the health, growth and future viability of your business to have a more formal, structured way of operating the business. I highly recommend that you don’t head down the status quo path. Some are happy with status quo, but I know that many of you who read this publication are looking for ideas for a new direction.

The sooner you start the process of planning, the sooner you can rid yourself of the many smaller – as well as the big – unproductive hassles you and your company face. There is far too much mental, emotional and financial energy wasted by some challenges that rental business owners presently face. Do not put up with having an out-of-control or stagnant rental business. Start the process now to develop the strategies that will help set the course for your company’s new direction. The result will be a faster-growing, smoother-running, less-stressful and more-profitable business.

Dick Detmer is a nationally recognized consultant, lecturer and writer and has 35 years of experience in the equipment rental industry. He is the author of “The Guide to Great Customer Service” as well as “A Practical Guide to Working in an Equipment Business.” For consulting, on-site employee training or to order books, visit www.detmerconsulting.com. Dick can be contacted at dick@detmerconsulting.com or (309) 781-3451.