Denise Norberg-Johnson

Financial Columnist

Denise Norberg-Johnson is a former subcontractor and past president of two national construction associations. She may be reached at

Articles by Denise Norberg-Johnson

October 2008
If you agree with the old adage that leaders are born and not made, you believe that leadership ability is determined by nature, inherited through our DNA. On the other hand, if environment affects leadership ability, then a leadership development program is a valuable investment. READ MORE
October 2008
Oil prices are affecting everything, from transportation costs to commodities, and you may be tempted to alter your pricing to increase your backlog as a cushion against future uncertainty. Maintaining your sales revenue is like a game of basketball: most games are won by just a few points. A winning pricing strategy also is based on watching every point. READ MORE
September 2008
Last month, we explored the first three steps of FRICTO, a framework for analyzing asset-financing alternatives. As a reminder, FRICTO is difficult to apply to privately held electrical contracting firms in its entirety, since it relies on market-driven stock price for some calculations. READ MORE
September 2008
As electrical contractors face an uncertain marketplace,it is tempting to cut marketing and advertising expenses. When you are concentrating on downsizing, belt-tightening and maximizing productivity, it is difficult to see the value of spending money on intangibles and equally hard to measure the impact of that spending. READ MORE
August 2008
Regardless of the economy's health or electrical contractors’ profit margins, lost assets must be replaced. There are several ways to obtain asset financing, such as incurring more debt in the form of loans or issuing shares of stock to raise capital from investors. Various frameworks are used to analyze the preferred method of raising capital for a particular situation. READ MORE
July 2008
Time is money, and the uncertain economy demands that you reduce overhead and improve efficiency. Here are some strategies to streamline routines and improve the flow of information by removing wasted time from your systems and routines. Routine tasks READ MORE
June 2008
Ratios are useful as both snapshots and video clips. For example, the cash on your balance sheet is a snapshot of your bank balances at one point in time. By the time you generate your financial statements, the cash balance has shifted. So, you must generate a video clip (a trend analysis) to show progress over time. READ MORE
May 2008
Managing a profitable electrical contracting business demands a high level of efficiency and productivity. You push your office staff members and field employees to use their time wisely, but how well are you using financial information to gauge the results? Here are some ratios you can use to measure your company’s efficiency. READ MORE
April 2008
In the first two parts of this series, we looked at external communication and meetings. In this final article, we’ll focus on reducing the cost of internal communication. Using personal conversations, telephone calls, e-mails, memos and newsletters efficiently can enhance productivity, reduce cost and improve your bottom line. READ MORE