Why Women In The Trades Are Awesome
The best thing I ever did in my business was partner up with a woman in the trades to help run my small business. If it wasn’t for her I honestly don’t think that the company would have done as well as it did.
Hiring the Right Partner
When I first started my small business I registered under as a sole proprietor and worked by myself for the first couple of years, slowly building up the business and making connections.
One of the best connections I found was with a Restoration Company. They ended up handing me out whatever work I could manage and kept new work coming in very consistently.
I started banging off 5 to 7 jobs a week and made anywhere from $1500 to $2500. Some months I would take home anywhere from $5000 to $7000 to start. Not bad for a new start up.
My work days soon became jam packed as more and more work came in. I started juggling the jobs around so much that I would be constantly running from job site to job site. My only breaks would be in my Jeep during transport when I would quickly shovel down a sandwich and a protein shake.
The juggling act soon became too much for me to handle and it was time to make some choices on how I want to run the business.
Did I want to stay small or make more money and grow the company?
Wanting to keep the momentum of my business I decided to hire another tradesman to be my right-hand man and continue to grow it.
As it turned out, my right-hand man ended up being a right-hand woman.
Working with Women in the Trades
I was on a project, shortly after a disastrous work day in Vancouver, with some workers I hired to help me on a project. They were old work friends from another company we used to work at in the restoration business.
After the day’s work, I asked my lady friend (who I’ll call “Alison” for privacy reasons) out to a local pub for a pint of beer. We started chatting about my new company, how things were working out and if I need any help on other projects.
By the end of a pitcher of beer, I realized that Alison had all the skills and the right attitude to help me get the business to the next level. I needed someone exactly like her as my “work partner ” and offered her to start working with me on all the upcoming projects, full time.
For the following next two years, we worked hand in hand like a marriage. Every day except for weekends we were together.
We tackled all sorts of projects like residential repaints, new construction, commercial construction and restoration work. We even landed some contracts for painting stores like Blenz Coffee House and Rogers Chocolates.
We sat together at the kitchen table (our office) for countless hours, writing up estimates and invoices, discussing work procedures, what kind of products we should be using, employees we should be hiring and customers we want to target for our marketing.
Alison showed me that women are fantastic partners to have in a construction business. We complimented each other with our blend of workmanship and professionalism.
Customers loved that we had teamed up and always gave us compliments on how well we worked together. I liked the fact that customers had a choice to talk to me or Alison. Some people would rather deal with women than a man and vice a versa.
Here’s my top ten list of all the things she did to help make Brother of the Brush Painting such a success and why women in the trades are awesome.
- She organized our days to a tee.
- Every morning she made a shopping list for the paint and hardwood stores, so we always had enough product for the projects.
- Was never late and never left early.
- Made sure we did everything by the book and never skipped a step.
- Supervised everyone and made sure the work was being delivered on schedule and on budget.
- Made sure our work was flawless and we delivered exactly what we promised.
- Made sure the estimates and invoices emailed out quickly, with accurate with finely detailed information.
- Had our office super organized with every tool in its proper place.
- Found work through her connections and found new customers for the business.
- Complimented our business with a women’s personal touch.
Resources for Tradeswomen
Although there’s been a massive building frenzy in Canada, unfortunately, there’s still a shortage of women in the trades. If you are a British Columbian woman in the trades there has never been a better time to start your small business in Canada and use your skills to pay your bills.
Women looking for resources on how to get started in the construction industry can check out:
Trade Trackers makes it easy for women who already have a skilled trade, to start up your their own business. You can register your business here or watch our quick video to see how we can set up and get you on the right track.
Good luck with your business everybody!
Mike and the Trades Trackers Crew