The Contractor Fight with Tom Reber

The Contractor Fight Podcast challenges contractors to live unafraid & motor against mediocrity. It's time to pick a fight and take back our dignity. It's time to wage war on the mindsets that hold us back from business and personal success.
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Dec 18, 2017

On this episode, Tom chats with small business financial guru, Ellen Rohr of Zoom Drain. Though Ellen didn’t start off as a successful franchise president, in just a few short years she owned the title. Believe it or not, Ellen started by almost running her family plumbing business into the ground -- and her transformation from that point to where she is now is something all of you need to hear. 

So how do you go from not being able to control a small family business to being president of a franchise that handles hundreds of locations across the country? By saying yes, finding the answers along the way and getting a firm grasp on the numbers. Ellen found herself business mentors, spent time learning how to read and understand the financial side of business, and the discovered the best way for her to organize that information. From there, she was able to figure out what her husband wanted with his business, and what she wanted to gain from her career which launched her into the position she’s in now. Thankfully, Ellen loves to help others in this industry and is a great resources for small business and contractor businesses when it comes to getting a handle on the numbers. 

Ellen’s Top Three

  1. Find Clarity
  2. Know The Numbers
  3. Live by the saying: “You can get everything in life you want, if you will just help enough other people get what they want.” Zig Zigler

Find the clarity within your business. Make the operating procedures, show your employees exactly what your non-negotiables look like. Create the standards and ideals that you want to see in your business. Ask yourself what you want in life, how you want to serve in life, where you see yourself going, where you see your business going. Have a clear vision of what you want and make it simple and understandable for your employees to be on that same page.

Know the money side of your business. You can’t operate for long if you don’t make a profit. But more importantly, you will not attract good people to work for you if you can’t show them that you know how to make money in the business. Take the time to learn and understand the financial side of things and really own that part of your business or hire someone who can and will own the numbers.

Be real with your employees. They might not ever fully buy into what your dream for the business is, but that’s okay. Instead, ask them what they want and what they want to do and where they see themselves going and grow together in that aspect. You can both be achieving goals and dreams at the same time, and that is how it should be.

Be sure to stop by Ellen's Website for some fantastic free resources and knowledge. Also check out her company, Zoom Drain. Ellen has some fantastic Books For Sale  too! 

Ready to level up your business IQ? Visit  The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group run by Tom! Don’t miss out, make sure to claim your seat at the must attend contractor event of the year, Revolution 2018. Reserve your spot before 2017 ends to snag the early bird pricing!

Check out The Dream Manager - Book recommendation from Ellen.


Dec 11, 2017

In this episode Tom interviews Brian Kaskavalciyan, entrepreneur, marketing strategist, author and speaker. He is a recognized expert on relationship marketing.

In this episode you'll learn:

  • How to maximize profitability and get better leads
  • Why you need a monthly newsletter
  • How to earn the right to make a high profit
  • How to stop working your A%$ off and not making any money

Find out more about Brian at


Ready to level up your business IQ? Visit  The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group run by Tom! Don’t miss out, make sure to claim your seat at the must attend contractor event of the year, Revolution 2018.

Podcast Editing and Show Notes via Podcast Buddy


Dec 4, 2017

On this episode, Tom shares his Marketing Mindset Strategies that he applies to his life and business.

Tom's Four Marketing Mindset Strategies

  • Tell the right story to the right people
  • Build strategic relationships
  • Own their eyeballs
  • Be consistent

Ready to level up your business IQ? Visit  The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group run by Tom! Don’t miss out, make sure to claim your seat at the must attend contractor event of the year, Revolution 2018.

Podcast Editing and Show Notes via Podcast Buddy

Nov 27, 2017

On this episode, Tom welcomes Al Levi of The 7 Power Contractor to bring you a real conversation about how to plan and prioritize your 4th quarter, ensuring a successful start to 2018. Plus, Tom and Al touch on the importance of finding the right people and allowing them to grow and hit personal goals within the company's overarching goals.

Goals are often a scary topic for many business owners, you can write what you want to achieve but if you don’t plan a way to make that list happen then you essentially are cheating yourself out of being accountable.  You have to be willing to write down what you want, be specific, make it objective and put a time-frame on it. There is no such thing as the goal police, if you don’t hit the goal you set the world isn’t going to end. So you can’t let the fear of not hitting the goal prevent you from setting them in the first place. 

If you’re like many human beings out there, you have a hard time holding yourself accountable. Luckily you can put yourself in a position to have outside help. Join an outside group so that you have peers helping to hold you accountable to getting things done. Don’t pick 100 things you want to do next year, focus on just the top few things you’d like to see get done and work your way through those.  Your goals need to be specific, pick your top five or ten and then write them out objectively and make a plan for reaching them.

There’s plenty to be learned from when things go well in your business, just as much that can be learned when things aren’t going well. Celebrate and evaluate those wins to see how you can be doing it more in the future. Business is like going up a hill, you have to know where the plateaus are so you can catch your breath but you also need to know what items are crucial for the climb. It’s a false sense of safety if you are sitting on a plateau thinking that there are no problems or no ways to grow your business.

Growth doesn’t just have to be  bottom line net profit or top line revenue. Growth in your business can (and should) be so many different things. It could be growing your employees, working on long-term marketing plans, helping your employees meet and reach their own personal goals, recruiting new staff, the options are endless.


Al’s 7 Powers

  • Planning
  • Operations
  • Staffing
  • Sales
  • SlaesCoaching
  • Marketing
  • Finance 

Listen in as Al’s breaks down how to find your Master Project List and then boil that list down to the top 5 goals you should be working on for next year. Your Top 5 Goals have  to be written down and posted on a wall where everyone can see them. Every week you are accountable to that board of goals, what did you do every week to make those top 5 goals come to life?

Hold weekly meetings to discuss:

What did we do right and how can we do it again?

What did we do wrong and how can we fix it?

What should we be doing next week to be prepared as a company?

Always should discuss the top 5 goals and how as a team and company everyone is working towards those top 5 goals.

Keep in mind that you do not have to be the one that has all the answers. Figure out what the biggest issues are and then take yourself out of the equation to see who can solve that problem instead. Then give them the power and authority to change it and let them take charge. You do not have to be in or doing every single change, bring your people into it and help your people grow while taking smaller things off your plate.

To learn more about Al, visit his website The 7 Power Contractor and learn more about Al’s 7 Powers and how to implement them in your own business. You can also download Al's 7 Power Cheat Sheet and pick up a copy of his book The 7- Power Contractor . Be sure to join the community at The 7 Power Contractor's Facebook Page.

Ready to level up your business IQ? Visit  The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group run by Tom! Don’t miss out, make sure to claim your seat at the must attend contractor event of the year, Revolution 2018.

Podcast Editing and Show Notes via Podcast Buddy

Nov 20, 2017

On this episode, Tom welcomes Mark Buckshon of Construction Marketing Ideas to discuss powerful marketing strategies for all contracting business. Learn the ins and outs of contracting marketing, find better ways to share your stories, and understand the data you need to keep growing your business.

Mark’s Top Three Discussion Points for Marketing 

  1. Look at the way you are treating clients personally and throughout their experience. Make sure that you are delivering value to each one of them.
  2. Understand how you can get your clients excited. Work on getting these enthusiastic clients to buy more and offer referrals for you in the future. Happy clients will also typically agree to giving you glowing reviews and testimonials that you can implement into your marketing strategy.
  3. Really look at you web marketing and social media.

Retaining clients is one of the easiest and fastest ways to boost your overall revenue. Retaining clients is about keeping the connection with them, during and after a job and building a positive relationship with them through their customer experience with your company. 

Even as brand new contracting company, you still have friends, family and have contacts that you can use to build your business. Find where you can contribute value to your community and get your name/face out there.

When you do spend money on external advertising, social media or print media, you need to look back at it afterwards and figure out how much business did you gain from it. Of the business you did get, how many of those customers are going to turn into repeat clients? Bringing you lifetime value from the ad. 

For social media, you should focus on strategies that build direct relationships with people.  Watch your social media carefully so you can respond quickly to any type of situation, positive or negative. Induce as much positive interaction or responses for your business as you can by providing an excellent customer journey. 

Make sure that your website and social media pages are relevant and maintained. You want them to be a lively place for discussion and content driven. This is your place to encourage communication with current and former clients. You can also show off your skills by highlighting cool new jobs or fantastic past projects. Social media is building client relationships and referrals but on hyper drive. It will be one of your most powerful and inexpensive ways to build your reputation. Consistency is key, you have to reasonably reliable with it. 

Make sure your website is responsive and has great mobile accessibility to it. More and more people will be using their phones to look at your website or social media pages and you want to be able to accommodate that. If you don’t look professional on your website and social media then you’ll be missing out on phone calls of potential clients right from the start. It’s so important to have a professional feel to your website and make sure it’s responsive.

Your main focus should be on making your customers experience top notch. They’ll remember the experience and it’s your greatest investment to your business. If you provide positive and outstanding experiences, then you’ll not only have repeat clients but those clients will happily share about their positive experience with others and you can use that to help market and build your brand to others.

Be sure to visit Construction Marketing Ideas for a more in-depth look at marketing for your contracting business. You’ll find relevant tips and valuable strategies that you can start applying today to boost your marketing plan and seeing tangible results. Mark has also written a book Construction Marketing Ideas that Tom highly recommends.

Want to level up your business IQ? Visit  The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group run by Tom! Don’t miss out, make sure to claim your seat at the must attend contractor event of the year, Revolution 2018.

Podcast Editing and Show Notes via Podcast Buddy

Nov 13, 2017

In this episode, The No BS Performance Coach for Contractors, Tom Reber shares 3 ways to teach you how to make more money in your contracting business.

1. Take Control of Your Sales Process

2. Know What Your Costs Are

3. Raise Up Leaders Tom Reber is a business coach for contractors and co-founder of the Contractor Sales Academy.

Are you ready to take the next step for your contracting business? Everything you need to educate yourself to take your business to the next level of success can be found in The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group.


Nov 6, 2017

Today Tom sits down with Laura Reale of Aquareale and Pondtent to discuss how she uses strategic marketing in her own business and how she helps others in this industry to reach their full marketing potential. Laura majored in journalism and continued her education with a Masters degree in Marketing. She is a seasoned marketing professional who understands the landscaping and contractor industry and now helps other companies in the pond world.

You will learn from Laura how a potential Aquareale customer goes from an initial contact to a returning customer. How she gathers and retains their information and begins to build that client relationship. After re-branding and becoming Aquareale, their business did over $100,000 more in business than the first year. The first thing Laura suggests you look at is addressing your brand and the way you present yourself. You should have logo, updated website, business card and represent your brand well. Laura lives and works in this industry with Aquareale and really gets how marketing should look in this industry.

Marketing is all about building customer relationships with clients both past and future. Staying top of mind shouldn’t just be pushing sales. Her weekly tips and monthly newsletter provide useful information, a give and take to build a nurturing relationship with your clients. This not only keeps you top of mind for your own clients but also helps to keep you top of mind for referral sources too.

To see how Laura and Pondtent can help take your marketing to the next level, check out the Pondtent List of Services or Contact her directly.

Are you ready to take the next step for your contracting business? Everything you need to educate yourself to take your business to the next level of success can be found in The Contractor Fight Accelerate Group.

Oct 30, 2017

In this episode Tom breaks down the real reason your contracting business isn't growing. Hint: It's not the work you are doing. You might be making one of these terrible mistakes. Do not miss this episode!

Contractor Business Tips: Are You Ready to Accelerate We're relaunching our Accelerate Program with more interaction, more content and more relevant topics to help you grow your contracting business. Tom Reber is Leader of The Contractor Fight. Live Unafraid. Pick a Fight with Mediocrity. Let's kick your contracting business in the ass: Some Of The Other Topics We Train On: -How to start a company... -How to grow your social media channels... -How to estimate projects properly... -How to grow your business... -How to grow your contracting company... -How to get more customers... -Painting -Water Features -Landscaping -Flooring -Remodeling Let's Kick Your Contracting Business in the Ass! SUBSCRIBE NOW! Facebook: Twitter: Instagram: Google+:

Oct 23, 2017

In this episode Tom sits down with Nick Schiffer owner of NS Builders and co-host of the Modern Craftsman Podcast. They discuss how he built his social media presence, NS Builders, and why sharing trade secrets can actually get you more jobs. 

Nick's Instagram

Modern Craftsman Podcast

Are you ready to commit to making a change?

If you’re sick and tired of being sick and tired. And you’re ready to be honest and humble about where you are, then it’s time to… ACCELERATE <------

Oct 16, 2017

In this episode Tom shares 21 Ideas to Instantly Grow Your Contracting Business! 

Members of The Contractor Fight Facebook Group share how they grow their contracting business. You wont want to miss these 21 ideas that might spark the fire under your business!


Join ACCELERATE - To make big changes in your business (and life) you need support. It’s almost impossible to gather the information, see the vision, and change your mindset without getting some fresh input. If you’ve been pounding the rocks for months, years, or even decades without seeing progress then it’s time to get a fresh perspective!

Motor Hard!


Oct 9, 2017

On this episode, Tom sits down with Phil Sarros of Sarros Landscaping and Dirt Monkey University, to talk about what, why, and how putting systems or processes into place is important for any business. Starting off in 2002, Phil started his company as a cleaning business for pools and apartments. That job allowed Phil to save enough money to start his landscaping business. His landscaping business grew extremely fast, so he had to figure out how to create and implement successful systems to keep his business running smoothly.

Many systems are important throughout any contracting business, but if you can only focus on just one, Phil thinks that having a bookkeeping system is the most important. You need to have a solid plan (system) in place for keeping track of the money coming into your business and where the outgoing money is being spent. You need a bookkeeping “dashboard” that will give you all the information on how to make the best decisions for your business.

For contractors Phil also suggesting the “Job Jacket” system, which is having a folder with all the critical documents that you’ll need for that job. Everything your crew could need will be in there: material list, special instructions, signed contract from the client, work permits. A copy of the client invoice and their method of payment once the job is completed. After the job that whole folder comes back to the office to be filed with the other completed jobs. This makes it very easy to review with your crew where each project could use improvement and where things went well. It also allows for you to easily track the bookkeeping aspect of each job with what was spent where and how much overall came in. 

When implementing a new process, if you don’t truly make it a priority to follow up with your staff after it’s in place, then they aren’t going to work. Take one system at a time, set it up and let it run for a couple of weeks. Constantly be getting feedback from your staff and  be available to answer any questions they have. Be there to carry them through working out the kinks during a new process introduction and then next one will go even that much smoother. But you can’t introduce a bunch of new processes all at once, because that will absolutely fail. Focus on implementing one new process at a time until it’s running smoothly with your team 

You can also include your staff in the process building task. Decide which process you want to change and in a meeting talk about it with your staff and ask how they think the perfect process for that particular part of the business would look. Giving your staff the time to voice what their ideas are on what a perfect process would look like also gives them all a feeling of ownership of that process, which makes transitions easier. Their input is valuable because they see things on the job daily that you might not notice.

Another benefit of having a good process in place is that it’s so much easier to see where things maybe didn’t go well on a job.  If you have a job didn’t do as well it’s much easier to pinpoint  exactly where something went wrong if you have clear standards for your processes across the board.  But you have to be committed to seeing these processes through, otherwise it’s not going to work. Don’t give up right when you’re about to turn the corner to do something extremely successful for yourself. Keep going forward and be honest with yourself when you feel you want to stop.

Recommended reading 212: The Extra Degree - Extraordinary Results Begin With One Small Change

Have a question for Phil, reach out to him directly at and visit the Dirt Monkey University Website for more information.

Oct 2, 2017

In this episode Tom addresses 7 money mindsets that will help your contacting business grow.

If you’re ready to take the next step in The Contractor Fight, join Accelerate.

What You Get:

– Monthly focus topics

– Weekly group coaching calls

– Access to the Accelerate Membership site with videos, worksheets and more!

Learn More

Sep 25, 2017

YouTube sensation Chis Berry joins host Tom Reber on The Contractor Fight this week. Berry, known on YouTube as The Idaho Painter, shares how he got his start as a painter and how he worked to make a name for himself (and eventually a full-time living) on YouTube by creating videos on topics he wanted to learn more about. Berry has plenty to share for contractors on getting started on YouTube, the importance of consistently posting unique content, and more.

Want to learn more about Chris, or learn from his tutorials? Visit his YouTube channel and his website

Nuggets of Wisdom: 

“Everything I learned about painting was from trial and error.” – Chris 

“I can take two things that I really love, [painting and technology] put them together and teach people what I love to do.” - Chris 

“The number one thing you have to do is you have to produce content on a regular basis.” - Chris 

“Find something about you that’s unique and different.” – Chris

“I believe that the more we let people behind the curtain in our trades, the more expertise is shown. One good byproduct of that is that people will understand a lot more of what goes into a trade.” – Tom 

“I’m trying to put more thought into my videos so they just make more sense, flow better, look more professional.”  - Chris

Sep 18, 2017

In this episode Tom defines the most important brick to lay your leadership foundation.

Looking for expert advice to grow your contractor business? Sign up for TCF's Accelerate program and you'll be connected to a weekly video group call every Friday with Tom and other like-minded business owners. Each week offers a different discussion topic for you to learn from.

Sep 15, 2017

In this week's episode, construction accountant Randal Dehart shares some of the most common mistakes contractors make in their own accounting and why you should never "lend" clients your own money for a project. Dehart has a ton of sound advice to share, including his five key performance indicators for contractors (or any business) and thoughts on when it's time to grow your company, hire assistants, and upgrade your tools. Hint: for the last one, the answer is immediately!

Looking for expert advice to grow your contractor business? Sign up for TCF's Accelerate program and you'll be connected to a weekly video group call every Friday with Tom and other like-minded business owners. Each week offers a different discussion topic for you to learn from.

Learn more about construction accounting on Randal's website, and purchase QuickBooks products from Randall at

And in a special offer for TCF listeners, Randal is offering free setup of his 5 key performance indicators on your edition of QuickBooks desktop! This is normally a paid service, but if you email Randal at or call at 206-361-3951 and mention the podcast, you'll receive this service for free!

Aug 28, 2017

In this episode, Tom sits down with Mike Agugliaro, founder of CEO Warrior . Mike took his first company, Gold Medal Service from making less than 1 million to more than 30 million in just a single year. He’s now the founder of CEO Warrior, host of the CEO Warrior Podcast, author of 5 books, and publisher of Home Service Max Magazine. They discuss two key elements to Mike's success in growing and developing a business, mindset and marketing.

Mike and his partner exited from their first business, Gold Medal Service, with one of the biggest wins in the industry. To go from 4 to 200 employees, there had to be a mindset change. You have to change the way you see work and business, and step away from the self sabotaging routine that so many are stuck in. Shift your mindset about the belief of what's possible. The number one thing to remember, according to Mike, is that "marketing is everything and everything is marketing." Good marketing pushes away those that are not a fit and will attract those that are.

Be clear with yourself on the type of person that you want to hire. Good people are out there, you just have to build a quality company culture that they want to be a part of. You’ve got to be hiring when you don’t need people and you need to have clear non-negotiables when you’re looking to hire. If you’re having to talk yourself into whether or not this person is a good fit, you probably don’t have the right person. Build yourself a "hot list" of people that are possibly great candidates, so when you do need them your list is readily available.

Learn to work in your sweet spot and don’t waste time doing things you aren’t great at. You don’t have to try and do everything yourself, learn to delegate and learn to trust. Never start your day without a plan, and make sure your plan is done the night before. You'll always move more efficiently when you already have a written plan to start the day. Be clear on what has to be done and who else can do it besides me?

Find your brand and figure out how to stand out against other competitors in your area. Marketing your business properly will help you stand out against those around you. Not sure of what steps to take next? Find someone who has done it before, give them permission and pay them money to tell you the hurtful truth. Find someone who is so committed to you that they’re willing to force you to improve.

CEO Warrior is having their next Fast Track Academy September 19-22, 2017. Spend 4 days with Mike, shifting your mindset to push your business to the next level.

Tom is also opening up the Accelerate program on September 8, 2017. Are you ready to take the next steps in the contractor fight? Accelerate will give you the education and guidance to take your contracting business up a notch. Accelerate will teach you strategy planning, goal setting, leadership, and marketing to help you build a stronger contractor business. Own your crap, level up your skill set and take the actions needed.


Accelerate Program with Tom Reber -


“What if we just go for it, and really think differently. And then Tom, life changed forever in that moment.” - Mike

“If we’re gonna do this, we need to find someone who has done it before that’s smarter than us. And tell us, what don’t we see.” - Mike

“I never knew that I even deserved, or there was even an opportunity to have a better life or better business.” - Mike

“Marketing is everything and everything is marketing.” - Mike

“The reality is, if you don’t step up, you’re probably letting someone down.” - Mike

Aug 14, 2017

In this episode, Tom sits down with contractor, author, speaker and sales leader Anthony Iannarino. This multi-faceted entrepreneur discusses the keys any contractor must keep in mind to be successful, from choosing a positive, confident mindset and determining what you want from your business, to developing the discipline to grow your business. Iannarino also offers advice on making your client relationships collaborative ones to build trust and repeat customers, considerations on when and if it’s time for you to hire a salesperson, and the absolute necessity of getting your content out there on a blog and across social media.

Iannarino’s latest book, The Lost Art of Closing is available now on Amazon, as is his first book, The Only Sales Guide You’ll Ever Need, a USA Today Best Seller.

Special Offer: Purchase The Lost Art of Closing, then email your receipt to and you’ll gain access to Anthony’s weekly Facebook masterclass teaching group for the book and you’ll also receive a free workbook!

You can also learn more from his daily blogging on

The Sales Blog and his own podcast,, In The Arena.

And don’t forget to check out CSA Revolution 2018, February 8-9, 2018 in York, PA! This two-day contractor’s conference will teach you the sales and marketing techniques that work in today’s markets and will cause explosive growth in your sales!


The Sales Blog

Contractor Revolution

The Lost Art of Closing

The Only Sales Guide You’ll Ever Need

Jul 31, 2017

In this episode Tom gives you three reasons to stop giving raises.


Jul 24, 2017




CONTRACTOR SALES ACADEMY<----------Learn How To Spend Less Time Closing More Deals, Get Higher-Paying Customers, And Kick Ass At Sales–In Just 12 Weeks! (Even If You Suck At Sales)

edited by

Jul 17, 2017

Tom welcomes Dan Dwyer a 22-year U.S. Army veteran who discusses his new initiative which is passionate about fostering powerful conversations dedicated to the boots to business advancement of veteran entrepreneurs. 

In this episode, Tom and Dan share personal experiences about transitioning from military life into veteran entrepreneurs.  Their discussion offers invaluable advice detailing the importance of leadership and goal setting.  Any entrepreneur, business or organization would agree Tom and Dan hit the nail on the head for anyone seeking to develop, strengthen or condition goal setting and leadership skills. 
"To be a good leader you need to be a great follower."
"All progress comes from truth."


Twitter: @dandwyer_


Instagram: dandwyer_


Jul 3, 2017

In this episode Tom asks you to man up and start fighting for your business. Join the contractor fight on Facebook and revolutionize your contracting business.

Jun 26, 2017

In this episode Tom talks with Josh Abramson founder of Allbright Painting. ALLBRiGHT 1-800-PAINTING began humbly 27 years ago with a few hand-stenciled wooden signs hung up on street corners in the San Fernando Valley.  After receiving his training and certificate of completeion from West Valley Occupational Center in Woodland Hills, CA, Josh Abramson would go out everyday and try to promptly respond to the incoming phone numbers on his pager by pulling over and finding a pay phone in the hopes that he would be the first contractor to call the customer back.  His persistence and hard work paid off and slowly the business began to grow.  The early years were extremely rough, but eventually he hired his first employee and began to make a name for himself.  


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