Richard Hawkes

Richard Hawkes's Posts

Big Picture: Overhead Haircuts Big Picture: Overhead Haircuts

Private equity groups are said to be looking to buy distressed building companies. Just as people bought houses two years ago, I am sure they're looking to flip these companies in two to three years for big profits. The question is: What would they buy? Read more

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Big Picture: An Inside Outlook Big Picture: An Inside Outlook

Albert Einstein said, "You cannot solve any problem in the same state of consciousness in which it was created." So how are big builders going to get themselves out of this housing mess without getting out of housing? It won't happen if you don't change your thinking. Read more

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Big Picture: A Marathon Ahead Big Picture: A Marathon Ahead

What do home building's leading indicators actually indicate? If you heed financial news reports, "gloom and doom" intensifies with each day. In our travels, we see builders choking on specs and excess land inventory as overheads balloon and cash flow slows to a trickle. As you look honestly at your overhead, debt obligation, and cash reserves, what's your plan to survive? If there's ever a time to have a long-term strategic plan, it's now. To survive in what will be an extended downturn and slow recovery, you must look forward, be predictive, and keep focus on the long-haul. Read more

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Big Picture: Life Below C Level Big Picture: Life Below C Level

Whether it's a boom or a downturn, it's hard not to fixate on executive management's grand designs, far-reaching dilemmas, and big decisions. What's often underestimated, though, is how important small, everyday decisions are that each employee makes, and the impact those decisions have on the direction, success, or failure of a home building organization. Read more

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Big Picture: Game Theory Big Picture: Game Theory

Leading a home building business is a lot like running a sports team. Think about the logistics of practicing, analyzing the opponent, making strategic player trades: All are decisions that drive the team towards the ultimate prize of winning a championship, or, in business, profitability. You see this in every facet of a professional sports team or when a business is working in step with the perfect vision and mission from leadership. Their forces become unbeatable. Read more

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