Latest Articles in THE TALK...

  • Let me preface this Talk by saying that I didn’t choose the topic based solely on the opportunity to share this after-hours picture of the Window & Door staff at the International Builders’ Show last week. (Although really, how could I pass it up?) I chose the subject of social networking events because my curiosity was genuinely peaked about the role they play in the window and... more »
  • I'm in Las Vegas this week at the International Builders' Show, where I'm always struck by the sheer size of the event. Last year, IBS attracted upwards of 50,000 attendees, and judging by the activity on the trade show floor today, I'd say that number will be higher this year. One builder went so far as to tell me the show "looked like the good 'ole days." And while that's wishful... more »
  • At the start of each new year, January 1 presents a fresh opportunity to achieve greatness. Whether that means creating new strategies to achieve new objectives or tightening up tried-and-true tactics to increase earnings, the start of the new year brings with it a feeling of potential. At Power, one of our top priorities at the beginning of each year is recruitment. Developing a talent strategy... more »
  • At the end of 2013, I visited the J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. After wandering the grounds awhile, I walked inside and the first thing I saw was an exhibit called, At the Window: The Photographer's View. My first thought was, “I have to tell John about this.” The photographs were evocative, funny, pensive, thoughtful and a little startling. Art is supposed to make you... more »
  • Fenestration product performance is dependent on proper installation. This we all know, and continually preach to all of our clients, no matter what our role in this industry. We are taught this early on, and through the years, this point is reinforced through experiences―both good and bad.  Should a performance issue arise with the installation, the installers are the ones called in to... more »
  • Sprinkled throughout nearly every 2014 housing forecast seems to be one word: “but.”   As in, “Housing starts have rebounded nicely, BUT rising mortgage costs and diminishing investor value will stall the pace of growth [in 2014].” ―Jeff Dietrich, senior analyst, ITR Economics   Or, “Residential starts continue to be positive, BUT are still well below... more »
  • The buying mentality among consumers appears to have shifted focus, moving from low-priced products to products that offer long-term value, according to the window and door executives we interviewed for the Window & Door 2014 Forecast.  And homeowners’ apparent willingness to consider factors beyond cost is resulting in opportunities for manufacturers and dealers to sell value-... more »
  • A few weeks ago, I sat with a group of building professionals who shared their answers to three important questions. At first glance, you might think these questions are relatively easy to answer. But you will likely find otherwise as soon as you start in on them. What is the most important thing to get done in your business that will position it for long-term success? What is the most... more »
  • Last week while WDweekly took a hiatus, I, like millions of others, gave thanks for many blessings. On that gratitude list is John Swanson. As many of you know, John has been battling cancer this past year. He’s continued to contribute to Window & Door, including the Talk, throughout his treatments. Even so, he’s been greatly missed. He wrote here last summer that he... more »
  • At my company, we devote a good deal of time to evaluating and measuring employee performance, and linking that data back to initiatives, benefits and programs to provide our employees with the tools they need to thrive. We've found success with the following principles when trying to determine how to build a culture of successful sales representatives: Training makes a difference: At Power, all... more »