Dan and Jodie, Lifestyle Tradie members

Dream of getting off the tools? Try this

By Andy and Angela Smith

Dream of getting off the tools? We’d say this is one of the main reasons tradies in business, like you, join our Lifestyle Tradie Membership. You’re probably done with the long days on-site and want to free up your time to spend on profit-making activities to drive business growth, right?

Meet Dan and Jodie Murray

In this article, Lifestyle Tradie members, Dan and Jodie, owners of Green Planet Plumbing share their story of turning a less-than-ideal business situation into a big success with systems, self-reflection and self-education … and now, they’re working more on the business, not in the business.

Here’s how they’ve designed their life to work for them.

A path to rebuilding

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“When we started out, our main focus was to keep the doors open and find a solution to a problem or challenge as it presented itself,” Dan said. “We were billing at an hourly rate and working for anyone who called.”

For Dan, and wife Jodie, owning and running Green Planet Plumbing on Lake Macquarie, NSW was taking its toll.

That’s when they reached out to us.

“We’d been following Lifestyle Tradie online for a while. After the dust settled on the business separation, the first call we made was to Andy. He and Ange set us on a path to rebuild the business,” Dan said.

“In four years, we have grown from myself and one wayward apprentice to employing six full time tradespeople (including me), one apprentices, two full time employees (including Jodie) and one part-timer.”

How they found their feet

Green Planet Plumbing’s husband-and-wife duo say having access to Lifestyle Tradie’s comprehensive library of self-education resources and the network of fellow trade business owners has been the turning point.

“We’ve consistently increased our turnover each month for the last four years and have changed the type of work we offer,” Dan said. “We’re targeting maintenance plumbing, along with a heavy presence in blocked drains, relining of pipework and sewers, and hot water.”

In 2017, they even purchased a new business and absorbed it to theirs, bolting it on seamlessly, thanks to the structure they had in place. They’re constantly on the look out for another, when the right one comes along.

“We’re now spending more time working on the business, which allows us more time with the family,” Jodie explained.

What are your three top tips?

Tip 1: Look after your clients! Having systems in place and training our staff to provide reliable, professional and friendly service, along with great workmanship, promotes repeat work and positive word of mouth. Our business has grown substantially from word of mouth. The Lifestyle Tradie referral program we’ve implemented has been a big success for us.

Tip 2: Hire the right people! We are really proud of our staff. Every day they represent us extremely well and our business wouldn’t function and grow without them. It’s really difficult to hire great employees, but making sure they are the right fit has been crucial for us. If they’re not the right fit, cut them loose straight away.

Tip 3: Embrace the tech and keep learning! It’ll be a headache to start with but investing the time to implement and learn the systems will make your life much easier. We’ll never say we know all we need to. Self-education through podcasts, books, training, and of course, everything Lifestyle Tradie has to offer, will keep you at the forefront.

Tell us your goals

They’re both now enjoying more holidays, more time on the boat, and more time with the kids — with big goals for the next five years.

“Our daily metrics are already locked down 100 per cent, stock management is on the way. We’ll be bringing other trades under our business system/model to provide a wider service base — and well still be continuing to increase turnover and profit,” Dan said.

What’s next?

  1. Want to know more about Lifestyle Tradie membership? Book a Game Plan Call with Andy see if it’s good fit for you.
  2. Download our Survive the Sh*t Storm resources, which includes  Lifestyle Tradie’s Break-Even Analysis Guide for Tradies,  and our Cash Flow Guide for Tradies.
  3. Join our free Kick-Ass Tradies Facebook group to learn how to set team targets using your business’s break-even point.