Transition to Wanaka going well
Engaging the support of a business coach has created tangible benefits in the way Wanaka builder Mark Andersen operates his relocated business.
The owner of MA Building moved to Wanaka early this year from Dunedin where he originally started his business in 2013.
A member of Certified Builders, Mark has 12 years experience in the industry.
Relocating has been a major change, made mainly for lifestyle reasons so Mark and his fiancee Jess Mathieson can make the most of the outdoor lifestyle Central Otago offers. “I think it’s the best place in the world,” Mark says.
Getting the business up and running in a different location has been challenging, but MA Building’s workload is steadily increasing; the company employs four qualified builders and one apprentice.
His Auckland-based business coach, The Successful Builder, has helped Mark navigate the sometimes rocky trail of business ownership. “Over the last 18 months he has helped me a lot.
He’s taught me the ins and outs of the business; how to market, hire staff, analyse business figures and price accurately.”
“I look at it like doing another apprenticeship. You learn how to be a builder and all of a sudden you are a businessman.” The catalyst for engaging a business coach was working seven days a week, 10 hours a day, finishing at 11pm after pricing jobs.
“His catch phrase is ‘get off the tools, make real money and get your life back’,” This has included setting up good systems and Mark has a weekly Skype meeting where he provides an update on what is currently happening, while also looking at “the numbers” and forward planning.
The business coach’s involvement with several other builders throughout New Zealand provides a benchmark for MA Building and the opportunity for better ways of operating to be shared among the group.
When pricing, Mark explains the process to clients in a transparent way including various contract options to suit the client’s needs, backed by guarantees and the ability to recommend a suitable draughtsman or architect and reputable sub-contractors.
“One of my favourite parts of the job is supporting clients through the early stages of their planning as this can seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t need to be.”
While the local construction market is very buoyant, clients are price conscious and the
ability to sell a new business as a trustworthy company backed by the confidence created through mentorship has been a key.
Another asset has been Mark’s involvement in a local business network group, BNI Wanaka, which connects a group of professionals who work locally.
“It’s been huge for me. It’s helped us get settled quite quickly. The connections have been invaluable.”
To date MA Building has largely been undertaking renovation projects in Wanaka, an area where Mark developed strong expertise in
Dunedin, as well new builds for various housing companies where they have been showcasing the high standard of workmanship.
Mark loves a challenge and thrives on unlocking the potential of a new or existing house by assisting a client throughout the design stage and to see their ideas and dreams come to fruition.
With the balance of the year mostly spoken for, Mark is pleased with MA Building’s progress in its new location, however he is always keen to hear from prospective clients with their upcoming plans and ideas.