I am in the pressure cooker again. Help!

Hi Aunty B,

A few years ago, I found myself doing all my quotes before working hours and spent at least half my weekends doing quotes – the demands had increased so dramatically that I simply could not get anything done during the working day.

In March I looked at the results for the quarter and noticed we had a sharp increase in the Work in Progress account of some $50,000 from the maintenance area. I looked hard at maintenance and noticed I had a field based worker and an office based worker. Clearly the results indicated a requirement for a second maintenance field worker to clear the accumulating WIP. So I thought about what had worked and what hadn’t and decided to make the office based position redundant. In its place I created a hybrid job, partially field based and partially office based, thinking this would be a good solution.

Now the situation is starting to resemble where I was at the beginning of this cycle. The ‘pressure cooker’ indications to me are:

  • Quotes not clearing through
  • Unable to tell where we are financially, as this is less important than getting the work completed right now

I think I have an error in my logic somewhere which has got me to this point, but I am not sure where the error is or how to identify what the actual need is right now. I just know I am doing it wrong and need some guidance to do it right.


Hi David,

That took so long to explain Aunty B had to go and lie down so it’s Dr C here.

Nothing wrong with trying to do the right thing when the rest of the world is getting it very wrong. Where you need to look is at the nature of the jobs that you are taking on. Which are the ones that are delivering above average returns and which are taking undue amounts of your backroom time for which there is no revenue stream?
Take your whole team down to the best local coffee shop (or the local) and find out what they think about concentrating on slightly bigger jobs rather than more jobs and how they feel that they can play a greater administrative support role as you go after the bigger jobs that are around with the economic stimulus package construction work.

It never gets any easier but it can make you more money with the help of your TEAM – Together Everyone Achieves More.

Dr C


To  read more Aunty B advice, click here.


What are you waiting for? Email your questions, problems and issues to auntyb@smartcompany.com.au right now!

In amongst this totally intolerable situation I had no choice but to get additional assistance. So I restructured the jobs I do, which was an absolute challenge. I employed a part-time administrator, chopped off a whole section of the company and placed it under the control of one of my most long-term staff and then trained him in how to make that work. Then I introduced two new roles to look after another section each. One of these was construction related.


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
SmartCompany Plus

Sign in

To connect a sign in method the email must match the one on your SmartCompany Plus account.
Or use your email
Forgot your password?

Want some assistance?

Contact us on: support@smartcompany.com.au or call the hotline: +61 (03) 8623 9900.