Mike Tiffany has been in the construction industry for 18 years, working his way from electrician up to project manager. He founded Diversified Construction Technologies in 2004 and has done work for companies such as SAIC, Bank of America and Motorola.
Name: Mike Tiffany.
Company: Diversified Construction Technologies, or DTC.
Company address: 7034 Convoy Court, San Diego, 92111.
Company phone: (858) 268-0077.
Year founded: 2004.
Prior business experience: I’ve been in the construction industry for about 18 years. I started working in the field as an electrician and worked my way into the office as a project manager. From there I made the jump to commercial general contracting spending the next seven years as a project manager.
Average hours worked weekly: 50.
Source of startup capital: Took out a personal $100k line of credit on our rental property.
2006 revenue: $5 million.
2005 revenue: $2.5 million.
Number of employees: Five.
Web site: www-dct-sd.com.
Birthplace: Los Angeles.
Education: Mesa College, Saddleback College.
Current residence: San Diego.
Family: My wife Sommer; daughter Maddy, 7; and son Charlie, 5.
Hobbies: Family time and travel south of the border, surfing and flying.
Reason for getting into business: My son was born with Sturge Weber Syndrome (seizure disorder with other complications); this created a tremendous emotional and physical drain on our family requiring constant visits to hospitals and specialists. With no family to assist us, we were left to conquer this alone and I needed to be with my wife and son through some difficult times, so I left a well-paying job with a great company and spent the next year with my family focusing on our son and a new direction in life. With time to reflect on what we wanted for our future, I decided to take my experience in construction and build a future that would accommodate my family’s needs. That’s when I founded DCT “Diversified Construction Technologies.” Our son is doing great, he’s strong and never gives up, although we do encounter occasional setbacks.
How I plan to grow the business: Hire only the best, and take it slow.
Biggest plus of business ownership: Independence, freedom of choice and selecting the Christmas party location!
Biggest drawback: None.
Biggest business strength: Our people.
Biggest business weakness: Size; makes it hard to land larger projects.
Biggest risk: Stepping out on my own.
Smartest business decision: Stepping out on my own.
Biggest business mistake: Not involving team members when hiring.
Toughest career decision: There have been challenging decisions yet I don’t consider any of them tough.
Biggest ongoing challenge: Maintaining the balance between working “in” the business and working “on” the business.
The most important part of my business: The people.
My business works best when: Both team and clients are happy.
Best way to stay competitive: You can’t be all things to all people. Focus on what you do best, and perform beyond people’s expectations. Knowing your competition helps as well.
How I measure success: Repeat business, being able to provide benefits to our employees, and by continual company growth.
Goals yet to be achieved: I’d like to get into ground up construction. I’ve done projects like this while working for others, but not yet as DCT.
My five-year business plan: Keep doing what we’re doing now, only better.
I would sell my business only if: Only when we are no longer having fun and only if I could ensure the future employment of our team.
Guiding principles I will continue to follow: I believe in treating others with respect and giving it our all. I also believe in maintaining a healthy supportive environment for our associates.