Latest Articles in Management

  • The final parts of the process are internal and external exit strategies
    This article is the third in a three-part series about business transition planning and options. You’ve heard the old saying, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Well, it’s true, which is why it’s important to stress the planning component of business transition. Who will ultimately run the business? Does a family member currently involved in the... more »
  • Industry companies attracting and retaining key industry players with more than just salary, recruiters say
    Some of the biggest window and door manufacturers have had a rough year. The downturn in the residential housing market has led to layoffs, pushes to streamline operations and slicing of employees’ work hours. But this is not why the headhunters who specialize in the residential fenestration industry are busier this year than ever. Recruiters are not scrambling to find work for displaced... more »
  • Assessing what's best for the company's future, and your own, should be as tactful as running the business itself
    This article is the second in a three-part series about business transition planning and options. Effective planning prepares owners, heirs, employees and customers for future change. It sets the foundation for strategic and operational decision-making and aligns owners’ long-term needs with the goals and objectives of the company and its management. It also improves the opportunity for... more »
  • Being proactive provides more options and helps align the long-term interests of the owner with the long-term direction of the company
    Too often, business owners spend their time working in the business rather than on the business. When the time comes to transition—whether that means turn the company over to the next generation, seeking new investors or selling altogether—they’re shocked at the amount of work involved. Moreover, these business owners generally leave themselves too few options and don’t... more »
  • Over the years, I’ve heard many people say, “We offer the complete package…,” talking about their companies’ products and services. No matter what they’re offering, whether they were a manufacturer, distributor or dealer, that could have been true, and could still be true, depending on the market or customers they serve. Still for many window and door... more »
  • On March 19, David Yancey of Homewood, CA, filed a lawsuit in San Francisco Superior Court alleging that he was misled with respect to the performance and insulating qualities of the gas-filled Andersen windows purchased for installation in his home. He challenges representations as to both initial gas fill and gas retention and claims that NFRC ratings of his windows were inaccurate and... more »
  • There are pitfalls in business combinations, but when executed properly, integration can add substantially to the bottom line
    Economic and industry-specific issues continue to weigh heavy on building materials companies, and many builders are asking for price reductions. To maintain prices and generate profits during a prolonged market slow-down, anxious suppliers, manufacturers and distributors are considering business integration. Integration, as a business strategy, is nothing new. Many antitrust laws,... more »
  • Jim Collins, author of “Good to Great,” makes the point that it’s easy enough to identify what separates a good organization or company from a bad one. We can see examples of good vs. bad companies in all tiers of our industry—manufacturers who don’t deliver on time versus ones that do, dealers who don’t return customers’ calls versus those who do. But... more »
  • Used properly, a hammer can build shelter for people in need. Used improperly, the same hammer can be a blunt instrument of destruction. It is given that our world involves more and more standards. This requires more and more controls against misuse. We are getting the standards; I am concerned we are not getting the controls. Let’s agree that industry standards help the fenestration... more »
  • Progressive distribution companies are finding new ways to add value and reduce costs
    The demise and even death of independent distributors has been predicted by experts for years. Even today the jury is still out. A recent IBM report on distribution said: “Depending on to whom you listen, the distribution industry will be disintermediated into extinction by a direct channel between manufacturer and consumer or it will emerge as the ubiquitous connective tissue holding the... more »