Although business owners must all master a core set of skills, your life as a mover and as the owner of a moving business requires skills that are unique to your line of work. As you prepare to launch your new venture, you must develop sufficient competencies to manage an efficient and profitable operation.
1) Leadership and Management Skills
As a business owner, you are a leader. You are responsible for selling yourself and your business while organizing and inspiring a team of workers who share your vision. As a leader, you must learn to exude patience and levelheadedness as you face daily challenges with employees, operations and customers.
As a manager, you must learn sound decision-making processes and how to make efficient use of your time, money and other resources. As part of your daily routine, you will need to stay alert for ways to identify and improve operational inefficiencies. You will also need crisis management and problem-solving skills to ensure your survival when trouble comes.
2) Organizational and Administrative Skills
A disorganized firm will have problems getting work done on time, and often let important leads, information and tasks fall through organizational cracks. You must spend time honing your organizational skills so that you can coordinate the activities of your employees and clients, keep track of assets, and accurately complete necessary pickups and deliveries. Even loading trucks in ways that optimize space and safety requires organizational skills, some of which might only come with experience.
Your role as an administrator requires you to make sure necessary paperwork gets completed and that records are stored in ways that meet industry, legal and regulatory standards. You must learn the importance of lead time while placing orders for supplies, equipment and products so that your company always has on hand needed physical assets. You must also ensure that your employees and vendors get paid on time, and that your clients promptly receive accurate bills.
3) Fitness and Health
Moving requires fitness and strength, so you must make sure that you are in top physical condition. As you assemble a team, you will need to ensure that the people you hire are physically fit, and have the necessary stamina to move furniture up and down stairs and onto (and off of) trucks all day. Moving also requires speed and common sense as you and your team must often make split-second decisions that can either salvage or destroy the belongings of others.
4) Safe Packing, Loading, and Lifting Techniques
Learn from industry groups and other movers how to best pack boxes, wrap furnishings and load trucks to get the most work done in the least amount of time without risking client property. A moving company that safely transports goods will earn good referrals, especially if customers also enjoy other aspects excellent customer service. Safety also involves the injury-free use of equipment as well as lifting and moving practices that are safe for the human body.
A robust training program will address most of the safety issues involved with your moving business and it will also add to your operational cost. Still, you can minimize the expense of training by searching for free online videos or by taking advantage of programs offered by industry associations. When either you or a member of your team becomes adequately trained, you can perform in-house training to execute an inexpensive and flexible training strategy.
5) Navigation and Driving Skills
The commercial moving trucks needed by your company might require special licensing, so prepare yourself for the possibility of taking special driver training classes so that you can pass required tests. Resist the temptation to operate without the proper driver credentials to avoid possible complications with law enforcement and insurance entities.
You and your other drivers will also need to know how to use navigation tools such as the ones that come with most smartphones. Depending on the needs of your drivers and firm, you might need to buy dedicated navigation devices that can stay inside your vehicles at all times. You and your team must understand the value of an accident-free driving record that is also characterized by dependability and timeliness.
6) Personality Skills
Your business depends on people, so it depends on you having good interpersonal skills. Communications, for example, form the backbone of your operation as you coordinate the activities of your team with those of your clients. You must also understand how to deal with stressed-out people who are dealing with many issues in their lives, including moving to a new residence or facility.
Always treat people with respect and be honest with them. Also, empathize with people and show them that you understand how they feel in their current predicament. When you do these things, you can quickly diffuse tense situations and focus on creating solutions rather than arguing with others and defending yourself. Regardless of whether you deal with your community, customers or employees, always put people first and treat them well.
7) Excellent Customer Service
Customer service continues to challenge the success of companies despite an increased awareness of its importance. If you prioritize customer satisfaction, you will build a solid reputation and customer base. Your customers should enjoy courteous treatment and good communications throughout their experience with your firm. Promptly keep your appointments, and always treat people and property with care. Most of all, when customers have questions about billing, concerns about handling or complaints about service, always be ready to find satisfactory solutions.
Spend the necessary time to learn about and develop the above skills in addition to the basic business skills that you already have learned. You are now a leader, manager, supervisor and communicator that must keep everyone associated with your business motivated and satisfied while keeping all your equipment, supplies and other assets in good order. Characterize your brand with competence and excellent service, and you will have an enduring competitive edge over your competitors that will result in profitability and growth.