Menold Construction divides its energies between insurance restoration projects, 75% of its business, and remodeling. The two businesses are organized as separate divisions -- sort of. The work is sold separately, but production people swap out as needed. The company also operates a cleaning division.

Owner Tom Menold (left, with vice president Steve Driscoll), who recalls when his company once took on nearly every type of construction job, says narrowing his focus enabled him to build the systems that let the company run itself. Ten years ago, he put in 80-hour weeks. Today, it's 35 to 40 hours. "If I've done my job right, there's nothing left for me to do. My job is to oversee [the company] and cause trouble."

Someone from Menold Construction calls every customer to ask how the company performed. On-time production and customer satisfaction get bonused -- and vice versa. "If [employees] have to go back," Menold says, "they get charged for it."