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On the Job

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ServiceMagic Named GE's Premiere Installation Provider for EVSE Units
Nationwide Partnership Provides GE a Solution for...Read more about
Is It Normal to Work 80 Hours a Week?
Unfortunately, long hours have become standard in our business, particularly for the small business owner. While "normal" likely isn't the right word for it, it certainly has... Read more on
Seven Reasons Why You MUST Have a Strategic Business Plan
Can you imagine the chaos you would be in if you boarded a commercial flight in which the pilot didn't file a flight plan, and had no real idea of where they were going? Read more on

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Answers to Ten Tough Business Questions
For this article, we asked a dozen successful builders and remodelers from around the country to share their opinions on some of the business questions our readers ask most frequently. Read more on
Trade Talk: Epoxy Coatings for Garage Floors
Shiny epoxy coatings, used for years to seal concrete floors in commercial and industrial buildings, are increasingly showing up in...
Supporting a Wide-Span Floor With Structural Steel
When my client described how he wanted to convert his home's existing two-car garage into a spacious new living room, I knew...
Stabilizing Basement Walls with Steel I-Beams
Many of the homes in the post­World War II developments have block basements, often laid with no grout or rebar in the cores. I've rebuilt...
Saving Trees During Construction
Contractors who make a practice of stripping all existing trees from a lot before starting to build can point to several practical...
Resources: Plain-Language Shear Wall Guide
As a framer, I have found it difficult to keep up with all the changes that happen in the building code. One of the more confusing...
Panelizing Houses
While many builders will never see the merit of building with panels, some formerly diehard stick builders I know have started doing at least some of their building off site. There are many reasons...
Ordering Ready-Mix Concrete
Concrete in general is a pretty simple material, with just four main ingredients: cement, water, sand, and stone. Those elements...
On the Job: Girder Truss to the Rescue
We all know what happens when you put an addition on a home and what once was an exterior bearing wall ends up in the middle of the room: You either drop a beam...
Making EIFS Watertight
As an architect and frequent consultant on waterproofing and building envelope failures, I see a lot of EIFS problems...
Making Brick Repairs Disappear
We've all seen brick repairs where the new mortar and brick didn't match the original — they're visible from half a block away. Yet with a little extra effort
Footing Fundamentals
Under every house is a foundation, and under most foundations are footings. Most of the time we take footings for granted, and usually...
Flexible Flashings
In recent years, builders have been paying more attention to the importance of keeping water out of walls. News of construction-defect lawsuits in California, EIFS failures in North Carolina...
Engineered Exterior Trim
More and more customers are insisting on low-maintenance exteriors, while builders are facing rising prices for quality lumber. So when it comes time to choose exterior trim...
Concrete Basics
Ready-mix plants all around the country sell hundreds of different concrete mixes. Fine-tuning your mix and your techniques can get pretty complicated. But you can usually do...
Building a Strong Cathedral Hip Roof
My small remodeling company specializes in renovation, but we occasionally take on new construction, like the architect-designed pool house...
Building Screened Porches
My company specializes in decks and porches. We keep ten two- to three-person crews in the field and build more than 90 screened porches...
Bidding Errors To Avoid
I've been a carpenter for 21 years and have had my own general contracting business for the last 16 years. Recently I...
Backfill: Fitting Post to Stone, Teriyaki Style
On a recent project, my crew and I incorporated a number of traditional Japanese building features, including a series of turned, structural...
Seven Deadly Mistakes That Will Kill Your Business!
While all businesses have their own challenges to overcome, all successful business people have learned how to 'manage' not 'run' their businesses. They begin the same way...Read more about
How To Make Your Time Management Plan Stick
You may think a time management session is a quick fix for all of your organizational woes, but it takes dedication to make the lessons from the sessions actually work..Read more about
Nine ways to Maximize Pay Time and Minimize No Pay Time
The more of your day that you fill with activities that make money, the more successful you will be. Think about what you do each day. How much of your effort generates income. Learn How to
Using Lists to Manage Your Business and Your Time
Most business owners know the steps they need to take to achieve their business objectives, but sometimes it's hard to prioritize. The starting point for getting organized is�Learn How to
Ten Powerful Steps to Keep Your Focus!
Most people fail in their attempt to string together enough of the momentum, desire, energy and persistence that they need to reach their goals. Focus is what keeps you on track to?Learn How to
Are Your Prospects for Real?
For any contracting business, time is money. A good sales pitch goes a long way in determining what prospects are worth the time and effort. Read More on How to
How to Solve Your Business Headaches!
If your business relies on you being there and doing everything, you don't have a business, you have a job! You'll never change or improve your business until you come to terms with the...Read More on
Effective Low-Tech Scheduling
You need expensive and complicated software to keep your employees organized and efficient at all times�right? A contractor in Washington State proves that all you need is a... Learn more about
Guarantee Your Completion Dates
The thought of voluntarily adding a penalty clause to your construction contract may seem like heresy, but it can actually make good business sense. Read more on
Salvaging Scrap Time
As business people, we realize our time is invaluable. But do you realize just how valuable those few moments of spare time throughout the day are? If you make $50,000/year ... Learn how to
How to Hold an Effective Meeting
We all strive to become more efficient and effective in our jobs but much of our time is wasted due to inefficiency, including time spent holding and attending ... Read More on
Our Center for On the Job is the best place to look up new methods on particular trade practices, new laws and regulations, and also easier ways to do the same old things. On the Job here means that we have contractors talking to contractors in the form of articles and advice. Who better to talk about how to get the job done than professionals who actually do the work? So if you are looking around for new ways and means or you would like to share some of your knowledge with other {} members, this is the place.