The Other Half of your Business

business management tips at NPE

Having the skills and knowing how to perform quality work is only halfway to a successful and profitable pavement maintenance business. The other half is the business side, which is why each January we devote an entire issue to business management.

This year we feature five articles by upcoming National Pavement Expo (NPE) speakers -- Roger Bostdorff, Nick Howell, Brad Humphrey, Bill Silverman, Jeff Stokes -- who each touch on some aspect of what they'll be discussing at NPE. Stokes tackles those awkward and troublesome growth stages and how to work through them, Bostdorff discusses overcoming price objections in the sales process, Humphrey offers onboarding steps that make it easier for new employees to become a productive (and long-term) team member more quickly, Silverman discusses the impact of "paying attention," and Howell takes the long view of his NPE attendance. Just a taste of what you can learn at NPE -- and information you can use as you plan this winter for the coming season.

Then Vinny Engongoro, owner of Roccie's Asphalt Paving (and another NPE presenter), takes us behind the scenes of the business his father started. His is the story of a small business that changed direction, took off, crashed and was rebuilt through perserverence and because Engongoro recognized the market had changed and Roccie's required a different business model. It's a cautionary tale but it works out just fine.

Then we take a look at your employees and examine some issues critical to today's labor market. We discuss mentoring as a leadership tool, how to get you employees to "buy in" to any new technologies you are implementing, and we even get a legal eagle view of how to handle marijuana in the workplace -- now that it's legal in so many places.

And for contractors thinking about adding sealer distributor or reseller to their business, we talk with sealer manufacturers who outline the benefits and challenges to diversifying in this way. (Hint: There's more to it than just pumping sealer.)

Accompanying all this coverage of the business side, we include the Top Contractor Survey (page 12) so your company -- your business -- can qualify for the 2019 Top Contractor lists that are announced in our June/July issue.