Latest Articles in COLUMN

  • It’s not just for the big boys
    The belief that small- and mid-sized business owners do not need to make cyber security a top priority is a dangerous misconception. At the AAMA Summer Conference, Larry D. Sjelin, Sr., chief of staff, Center for Infrastructure Assurance and Security, University of Texas at San Antonio, spoke about how cyber thieves have increasingly targeted small businesses over the last four years. Viewing... more »
  • Bring your true purpose to light
    Once an organization defines its leadership statements, it’s important to continually reinforce the message. For example, ProVia uses this flyer as a paycheck stuffer to put one of the statements in front of its employees. (Image courtesy of ProVia; pictured: Pam Ott.) My company recently took all of its employees on an eye-opening journey over the past several years. It began in... more »
  • Avoid antitrust exposure with conscientious competition
    Tradeshows are wonderful opportunities to meet new people, reconnect with old friends and learn something new. They also put companies into close contact with their market competitors. And, where market competitors come together, the specter of antitrust violations is present. Before eyes glaze over at the thought of an article addressing antitrust laws, recall that competition laws in the United... more »
  • Update of ASCE 7 likely to confuse design wind pressures for residential construction
    In the last few installments of Code Arena, we’ve looked at the more significant proposed changes to the 2015 ICC Group B codes and their potential impact on the fenestration industry. This month’s column provides an overview of the proposed changes for structural design of residential buildings that were approved during the 2016 ICC Group B Committee Action Hearings. If the approval... more »
  • Unlocking the secrets of Yelp
    Superman and Kryptonite. Harry Potter and Voldemort. Your cat and the vacuum cleaner. They’re all natural enemies, just like business owners and Yelp. That’s the common rationale, anyway, and it’s understandable. While not all business owners necessarily hate Yelp, many—including plenty of window and door professionals—would be perfectly happy if America’s... more »
  • Tips on how to train and motivate unskilled laborers
    I’ve hired my share of workers and have learned some hard lessons about what influences quality employees—whether they have experience or not. As a crew leader in the field, I learned some effective tips on how to successfully train, instruct and motivate new employees, which I’ll share here. tip #1 SET THE STAGE Don’t just “start working.” Instead, begin by... more »
  • Do the work right in the beginning; benefit your company in the end
    Due diligence seems most often associated with mergers and acquisitions, where the acquiring entity looks deep into the target company—they want to know what they will get when they pay. But there are also certain situations that arise in the process of designing and fabricating windows and doors that call for due diligence, as well. If you want to have confidence in what you will get out... more »
  • The potential impact of latest bills
    In a recent Eye on Housing blog, Robert Dietz, chief economist and senior vice president for Economics and Housing Policy for the National Association of Home Builders noted that “housing demand is promising… but while home building continues to grow, the industry is currently in a cautious stance given regulatory burdens and supply chain issues.” Builder confidence indeed... more »
  • Approved IECC proposals focus on alternate compliance paths
    The ICC Group B Committee Action Hearings took place in Louisville, Kentucky, April 17 to 27, 2016. These Hearings are the first step toward the development of the 2018 edition of the International Residential Code, the International Energy Conservation Code and the structural provisions of the 2018 International Building Code. Anyone can challenge the committee action by submitting a Public... more »
  • Window safety awareness is ongoing
    First, we heard the ominous “freight train” high speed wind barreling down our street in the dark of night. Then, brief silence as the 80-year old oak tree pulled up from its roots and began its fall toward our house. The crash of the trunk and branches crushing our house didn’t just startle us but made our hearts pound as limbs randomly punched through the ceiling. A moment... more »