A home builder finds a new way to build her business

06/19/2011 | National Public Radio (text and audio)

Martha Rose says she has been building houses "on spec" for almost four decades, but over the past three years she has lost money on nearly every one. Facing a cash-flow crisis, Rose switched from paid staff to on-demand contractors, and she says she doesn't miss the cost or complexity of payroll taxes, workers' comp and so forth. "I can't see having a business that is that complicated again," she says. "The idea is to get leaner and meaner, not literally meaner, but to get your business down to bare essentials."

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