Richard Steven works personally with each client to clarify and achieve their personal business goals.

Richard has been active in the remodeling industry since 1975. He describes the genesis of his interest in business management and metrics like this:

“In the fall of 1969 I took a ceramics course at the University of Minnesota. The first day featured a wheel-throwing demonstration, and as I saw forms spring to life from raw clay I was hooked; I could see myself as a potter. Two years later I left school and, with a friend, opened a pottery studio in Minneapolis. With a $3,000 loan to cover start-up costs, we built a brick kiln, and began selling our pieces at art fairs, gift shops, and studio shows. Not too much later, after the first blush of enthusiasm had run its course and my wife was taking on her second job to help us pay the monthly bills, I felt motivated to somehow figure out what it would take for me to actually make a living as a potter.

Our kiln held about 200 pots. My partner and I could fill and fire it roughly twice a month, with about 10% wasters. Thus we generally could create about 360 sellable pieces per month. It struck me (they didn’t teach us this part at the University) that if we added up our monthly costs for gas to fire the kiln, glaze materials, clay and supplies, and then we added the amount we personally needed to live on, we could tell how much total income we needed each month. And further, if we divided the total income needed by 360 we could figure out what our average price per pot needed to be.

I loved making pottery. But I was blindsided to find there was more to supporting my family than simply being a good potter. In my analysis I could not envision myself able to sell my pieces at high enough prices to earn the income we needed. And I couldn’t think of a way to boost monthly output enough so the average price per piece sounded reasonable. I experimented with ways to make the numbers fit together, but eventually concluded that I needed to find a different line of work.

This experience, almost 40 years ago, was my introduction to the power of business metrics.”

Richard went on to become president and co-owner of a design/build remodeling business for 13 years, during which time he successfully applied his interest in business metrics and systems. Since selling his share in that business, Richard has been a designer, writer, consultant, speaker and trainer. As a staff editor for Creative Publishing International in the mid 1990s he wrote and edited a number of books on remodeling and woodworking topics. In 2001 Richard founded Fulcra Consulting in St. Paul, Minnesota, and in 2005 opened a western office in Seattle, Washington.

Through Fulcra Consulting, Richard provides business management training and support to remodeling companies of all sizes. In addition to direct work with remodeling companies, Richard conducts training programs and speaks on business management topics at remodeling industry conferences. His articles on small-business management have appeared in such publications as The Journal of Light Construction, Upscale Remodeling, and The Builder’s Journal.
Richard Steven, Founder
"Helping Remodelers Succeed"
(651) 253-1764
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“ Working with Richard Steven and Fulcra Consulting took the mystery out of tracking sales, production and profitability.  He worked with my business and staff to help us meet our goals.”
- T.F. (MN)
“The practical MAP systems have supported our company’s growth, both in volume and profitability. The company is much more manageable today than it was three years ago when we started with Fulcra.”  
- D.C. (WA)