My Journey Into Construction

Unlike many individuals whom might just have the born genetics to be a great craftsman, which generally leads to them going into the construction field in some caliber I am not blessed with such genetics.  Well if you found yourself on this blog in one way or another I first do not have some special sauce, magic, or any other kind of voo-doo that will make you a contractor.  My plan is to continue to write a weekly blog of my journey in construction.  I’ll write about different opsticals I had to overcome on the way, give you my thoughts on how I do things (for what they are worth), and just hopefully have a useful amount of information for you.  Let’s get started…

So like I said I wasn’t born with any kind of gen that made me good a building things.  I actually started my journey somewhat later than typical.  My background has always been in “Big Box” retail management.  Primarily in operations, logistics, and Human Resources.  I have my undergrad from Wichita State and will have my graduate from there as well (Spring 2020).  Before I even attend college I wanted to be a fighter pilot or a Fortune 500 CEO.  The fighter pilot thing fell by the waist-side when I had a brian tumor removed when I was in my teens.  

I quickly learned through my job(s), career, and school that I had a real talent for business and strategic management.  It just came very natural for me.  Upon my graduation at Wichita State (undergrad), I sat out to start my “dream” business.  I raised $300k in various forms and hit the ground running… BattleStations Gaming was born!  After a few years one of my closest friends had the desire to start his own business, a construction company.  So like a good friend I helped, guided, and gave him advice on starting his new venture.  Months passed and he tried many times to get me to go with him on his journey.  I, still running my “dream” business kept refusing.  What I didn’t know though at the time was my “dream” was slowly turning into a “nightmare”.  Now, I don’t want to get into all the details, simply said it didn’t work out and I ended closing my “dream” business in 2016.  If you’re interested in learning about that experience or might be going through a rough experience with your own business, take a look at my book “The Emotional Journey through Entrepreneurship” The BSG Story on Amazon.  

Construction Happening Here:

At this point your probably like what am I reading this for? Isn’t it supposed to be about construction stuff.  Well yes, kind of.  So, after closing my “dream” business I started remodeling my basement and watching a lot of Netflix.  Feeling horrible at the time would have been an understatement.  One day looking to see if I laid my floor right, I sent a picture to my above mentioned friend.  From there we reconnected and started discussing his business, which at the time did well, but it was really 3-guys and a truck.  Through our conversations we ended up agreeing that I’d take over 40% ownership of this construction organization and he would retain 60%.  At first he offered 50/50 split, but I refused.  I also to this day continue to tell this story. “I’m the guy that doesn’t hang a picture from straight, why in the hell would I be a good contractor!”  Somehow he convinced me that it could work, now 4-yrs later and I’m still in construction.  It was really just supposed to be a temporary thing until I figured out what is next.

In the 4-yrs we’ve been partners, we’ve managed to quadruple our revenue from his 1st year in business.  We continue to expand and grow.  Even now as I’m writing this blog I have a 3000sq ft home addition starting within 30-days, a new home discussion with a client two days from now too.  

Learn more about our construction company: Tyler Home LLC

What’s it look like for you?

What does your journey look like?  Are you more like Matt or like me?  Matt is an amazing craftsman to say the least, me not so much… However, we make it work and it tends to work well (most days).  In either case if your like Matt then you probably can just jump right in.  I’m guessing your still reading because your not sure how or your worried about the “risk”.  Yes, the risk is scary, but you aren’t alone.  You don’t have to be in construction to worry about the “risk”.  When I lost BSG, I didn’t just lose money (a lot of other people’s money), go bankrupt personally, but I lost a lot of myself.  (The emotional stuff). Something I still am looking for… However, I wouldn’t change it for the world!  I still to this day remember exactly were I was standing in my store, when Matt asked me the question. The question you probably have too. How? How do I do it?

The How?  The What If?  The Fear…

Well the one question was then followed with another, and another, and then the fear part. Matt, isn’t the first person that has asked for my advice. He may not be the last, but I can say we all have these questions.  My advice To him “Do you want to be on your deathbed regretting that you didn’t try?”  Followed by “So, what if you go bankrupt?  At least you tried, that’s more than most people do!”  About a week after that conversation Tyler Home LLC was born.  About six months after that BSG died, and a month after that I found myself a part owner of a construction company with no skill in hanging a level picture frame.  If your on the fence about what to do.  Well my advice is ask yourself the above questionS, then consider the worst outcome that could probably happen, and then finally make your move!  Trust me I thought the worst thing was going “bankrupt” and losing everyone’s money whom invested in my “dream”.  The funny thing is, it really wasn’t as bad as I made it out to be.  My old investors still take my calls, have told me many times I did everything right, and would do it again in a heartbeat.  

So…. What are you waiting for. Go for it!