The Talk

  • January 7, 2014
    THE TALK...

    Confident in the Economy?

    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 ... more »
  • December 17, 2013
    THE TALK...

    A Shift in Focus

    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 ... more »
  • December 10, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Three Questions

    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 »
  • December 3, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Contacting John

    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 »
  • November 18, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Building a Successful Sales Culture

    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, ... more »
  • November 12, 2013
    THE TALK... | Sales & Marketing

    Have You Tried Small Business Saturday?

    More major retailers are deciding they can’t wait for Black Friday and will open their doors on Thanksgiving. Meanwhile, as we head toward the holidays this year, I’ve been seeing more commercials and references to Small Business Saturday. Supported by American Express, Small Business Saturday is designed to celebrate local businesses and encourage consumers to “shop ... more »
  • November 5, 2013
    THE TALK... | Sales & Marketing

    Is Social Media Part of Your Internet Marketing Plan?

    There are many ways in which a thoughtfully designed Internet marketing campaign can build and convert leads for window and door businesses. From improving your website's search engine optimization so that it appears higher in search results to targeting local homeowners in specific demographics with mobile marketing, these methods can provide an excellent return on investment for your ... more »
  • What Trends Will Emerge in the 2014 Top 100?

    At Window & Door, we will soon begin working on the 2014 Top 100 Manufacturers, our annual rankings of North America’s largest producers of residential windows, doors, skylights and sunrooms. We will reach out shortly to companies on last year’s list to gather updated information. We will also contact companies we believe are potential candidates for the rankings.But if you ... more »
  • October 22, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Is it Time to Consider Next-Generation Replacement Products and Processes?

    In my two most recent From the Field columns―"Fenestration Evolution Brings New Challenges to Replacement" and "The Future of Window Replacement"―I wrote as much about speculation as I did about fact. My main focus was, “How will current new construction products and processes affect replacement products and processes in the future?”My replacement ... more »
  • October 15, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Are You Going to the Remodeling Show?

    Back in the ’80s, the annual NARI exhibition was arguably the largest window and door show in North America. The exhibitor list included all the major wood window manufacturers—many still focused on wood at the time—as well as several dozen vinyl replacement window manufacturers. Suppliers of window and door manufacturing equipment, components and industry-specific services ... more »