Today's headlines are talking about how 2016 may not be best year for construction. In fact, many are saying we are still feeling the effects of the Great Recession years of 2008 to 2010.
Yes, times may be challenging for business owners, entrepreneurs, and sales professionals in the steel business, but it is important we stay focused winning our own wars on attitude and grasp that it is not the market that determines our success, it is us. To be specific, it is our mindset.
Why do some in the steel business succeed during challenging times whilst others flounder and fail? Some reasons are that successful companies, entrepreneurs, or sales professionals tend to cultivate a mindset of change, innovation, improved service, and most importantly, learning from past mistakes. Learning from failure is a pathway to success, and we all know that this pathway is far from straight, so do not give up without a second try.
2015 saw Dowco’s steel detailing business have its best year since the company's founding in 1970. The company grew more than 80% over the previous year and was profitable. Why and how did this happen?
After more than four decades in the steel business, we thought we had all the answers and that our systems and processes would stand the test of time. We could not have been further from the truth. Fortunately for us, economic and operational adversity stirred us out of our corporate stupor. We accepted that we had become complacent, with many of our systems and processes out of date and our re-invention began.
Today we are a new company. Our success is coming from a series of carefully planned strategic initiatives, including:
- an investment in cloud storage technology for our 3D project models, which now gave us a true global production team
- a re-evaluation of our processes and project reporting tools
- new strategic management hires
- and lastly, the establishment of our own lower cost, IT-enabled offices in Manila and Kolkata, giving us a detailing production team of 220 detailers and the benefit of a blended cost structure ensuring we remain competitive in an increasingly competitive marketplace.
We tell you this to impress upon you that you can succeed regardless of the economic conditions and to share with you the type of company Dowco has become. There will always be negative forces and justification for poor financial results. But if we change our mindset, have the confidence to come up with a new plan, and are not afraid to make drastic changes, the results can be astounding.
In the end, we all do better for one of two reasons: inspiration or desperation. A few years ago, we were desperate, so we re-invented ourselves as a company. Today, as the second generation owner of Dowco Consultants Ltd., I can proudly say we are again maintaining our reputation as an innovative and technology centric steel detailing company serving the North American steel construction market. Take your own desperation and turn it into innovation. Dowco did, and now we mean business!