Photo: Compoa

When Sea Pointe Construction (Big50 2004) began its 20th year in business, owner Andrew Shore (far right, with Larry Anderson, left, and Rick Little, middle) and his team decided to use the milestone to transform the company from good to great. This required examining every aspect of the business.

The Irvine, Calif., company had already set up teams based on the Six Sigma process large manufacturers use for measuring quality to eliminate defects. These teams were asked to define how departments are tied together and to measure success within departments.

The company decided to ask the teams to now focus on how to take Sea Pointe to the next level and what would be required to continue in business for the next 20 years.

The teams came up with several ideas for the 20th anniversary celebration. First, they decided that the company had to promote the event. “We created a special 20th anniversary logo and put that on all our business documents. We wanted a comprehensive package,” sales manager Rick Little says.

Sea Pointe also decided to advertise on television with a commercial highlighting the anniversary and explaining the design/build process. Little says that TV ads are more targeted than radio ads. “We controlled the process by defining the areas where the commercial would air. Radio is more economical, but it's too broad,” he says.

The team then decided to redesign Sea Pointe's Web site. Since the update, time spent by visitors on the site has increased. “With only four seconds to capture the viewer's attention, the redesign doesn't attract new viewers, it just keeps them there longer,” Little says. The multi-layer marketing program includes jobsite signs, postcards, print ads, and phone book ads, marketing manager Larry Anderson says.

To establish Sea Pointe as a design powerhouse, the company also set up seminars for design students from area schools. Anderson says that once the students graduate, they will be working for homeowners and will remember Sea Pointe's designers as “accessible experts.”