Latest Articles in Strategies & Practices

  • It seems as though cloud-based computing is picking up steam in the manufacturing sector. "The best manufacturers I’ve visited this year all share a common attribute," writes Louis Columbus, a Forbes contributor in a recent column. "They are obsessed with making themselves as easy as possible to work with from a supply chain, distribution and services standpoint.... more »
  • My first foray into the window and door business was in early 1984.  Many things have changed in the sales arena since then, except for one: the challenge of converting a lead into a sale.  The first step in the sales process is to find a prospect interested in your products and to set up a sales appointment. With the appointment comes the challenge of converting the homeowner's... more »
  • The housing market continues to recover, but not at the rate many of us would like to see. Economists attribute sluggish growth levels to rising material costs and a lack of skilled labor, among other reasons. Builders around the country are pointing to such problems, particularly in some of the hotter new home markets. It's been a long time, however, since I heard such complaints in the window... more »
  • I just love this list of 10 surprising assertions from entrepreneurs, published recently as a column on Forbes.com. Even though the columnist warned me that a statement or two might come as a surprise, I still managed a couple of mental “no way”s and “really?”s as I made my way through it. Of particular note were some against-the-grain assertions, including that business... more »
  • With every tweet, share, like and pin, it becomes more apparent that social media is growing as a major tool for communication in the United States. In fact, recent surveys calculate that time spent on social media accounts for one out of every six minutes spent online in the U.S. Add to that the fact that social media advertising is projected to increase from $2.1 billion in 2010 to $8.3 billion... more »
  • Canada’s Durabuilt Windows & Doors marks 25th anniversary while positioning itself for the future
    Durabuilt Windows & Doors is celebrating. This year marks the Edmonton, Alberta-based manufacturer’s 25th anniversary; the launch of a new logo and brand image; and a place on Canada’s Best Managed Companies list. The reasons for that honor are many, but Joe Sunner, president, says Durabuilt’s success is rooted in “hard work, around-the-clock dedication and... more »
  • With the spring season rapidly approaching, a number of homeowners may be preparing to attend their area’s seasonal home shows. For many in the remodeling industry, it likely feels as though exhibiting at a home show is one of the oldest tools in the shed. In an age when homeowners have increasing online options for researching home remodelers, projects and products, it may seem old... more »
  • Let me start off by saying I do not intend to have a conversation about gun control legislation. However, it’s pretty difficult to ignore the unfortunate series of events our country has experienced at the hands of misguided gunmen in the last several months—including an incident just yesterday at a Texas college. What I am interested to know is whether your workplace has security... more »
  • Like most Americans, I spent part of the holidays following the news of the fiscal cliff negotiations. I was relieved when a deal was finally struck, thinking the stage is set for window and door industry growth in 2013, if only Washington can keep out of the way. With all the discussions focused on tax rates for upper income people and potential spending cuts, however, I didn't give much thought... more »
  • More window and door companies continue to embrace social media, but mobile technologies might take longer to establish themselves among manufacturers, distributors and dealers than some expected. These findings are the result of a series of questions included as part of Window & Door's 2013 Industry Pulse study, asking about the electronic tools and media companies use to... more »