Over the years, Mason Hearn's partners have retired or left the industry, leaving him sole owner of McGuire, Hearn & Toms. He's made some changes to adjust to his new role. He is grooming his architect to take charge of the design side, bringing in a full-time estimator, and training his project manager to run production.

Until recently, Hearn charged a design fee of 3% of construction costs. He was prompted by his networking group to increase this amount. They told him the company's designs were as professional as those of a full-time architect and that they have the added benefit of providing a budget. Hearn now charges 7% and is testing the market to see if it will bear a 10% fee.

Hearn and his original partners came from a commercial construction background, which he feels started the company off with professional systems -- especially in documentation. But, he says, he is reviewing and rethinking all the company's policies. By delegating responsibility, he has the time to spend on increasing the number and quality of his leads.