After learning the ropes doing sales and production for an exterior replacement company, Bob Weickgenannt decided to start his own full-service remodeling business. Starcom staff completes about 20 bath projects, 12 kitchen projects, and two or three additions every year. Weickgenannt has one K&B designer on staff. For additions, he works with outside architects, several of whom he has partnered with for 10 years.

Weickgenannt has an open-book policy with his employees and meets with them weekly to discuss company financials. He also added a profit-sharing plan last year. “In this job market, to get the cream of the crop, you'd better offer everything. You can't have any holes in your job compensation package because your competitors will fill them,” he says.

He recently made the move to project management — now using subcontractors for all fieldwork. He researched this move by visiting another remodeling company with the all-subs structure. Part of Starcom's commitment includes a full-time scheduler. This employee uses Microsoft Project to schedule jobs and submits budgets and job descriptions to all subs.