The Talk

  • February 2, 2010
    THE TALK... | Sales & Marketing

    Do You Do Demographics?

    Given the not-so-great Great Recession, we're used to looking at and crunching a lot of numbers. We watch housing data and consumer confidence indexes. We keep a close eye on our bottom line and keep our fingers crossed for the top line.And lately we see some glimmers of hope. Not big rays at this point, but small glimmers peeking through. While some companies are, I'm sure, still locked-down ... more »
  • January 24, 2010
    THE TALK... | Sales & Marketing

    Do You Tweet?

    Along with the many products on display last week in Las Vegas, I couldn't help but notice the number of signs in various displays exhorting attendees to "Follow us on Twitter."  One manufacturer noted to me they were celebrating their first anniversary of "tweets."  There was no shortage of Facebook mentions too.  It's clear social media is being used by ... more »
  • January 20, 2010
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    What Kind of Growth Do You See Ahead?

    "We're looking for 20 percent growth this year." That's what one window manufacturer told me yesterday as I made the rounds at the International Builders' Show.  It was a refreshing change from the conversations I heard a year ago when a mood of doom and gloom was more prevalent.Now I've heard numerous reports, most specifically from those focused on the replacement window ... more »
  • January 12, 2010
    THE TALK... | Codes & Standards

    Are You Ready for New Energy Star Criteria?

    There's still a transitional phase to go through, but with the new year, new criteria for Energy Star windows, doors and skylights quietly went into effect last week. A lot of companies, no doubt, have invested a lot of time and money into making sure their products could carry the new label.  There's probably still work being done, too.For our poll question this week, I thought I'd see ... more »
  • My 2010 Resolution is...

    We’ve been doing The Talk for a couple of years now, and what I’m really loving about the feedback lately is that on the topics to which we cycle around to annually, we’re starting to paint a year-to-year picture of the industry’s mood. So while there’s a lot going on right now—not the least of which is the status of the health care reform bills and ... more »
  • December 16, 2009
    THE TALK... | Operations

    Are You Ready for Lead?

    Because we didn't have enough to keep us on our toes next year, the window and door industry has yet another challenge on its hands. A challenge, I'm expecting, that may catch more than a few companies off guard. I'm talking about the lead paint handling rules slated to go into effect in April 2010 that would apply to all companies doing replacement projects in homes built before 1978. We ... more »
  • December 8, 2009
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Will "Cash for Caulkers" Help the Industry?

    The Obama Administration is working on a program to boost energy efficiency upgrades in homes, including replacement of windows and doors.  The industry is all for that. I'm sure many other executives would have been happy to join Jeld-Wen's Ron Saxton at the White House jobs forum last week to make the case that new windows and doors would be good for a lot of American homes and that our ... more »
  • December 1, 2009
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    What Will Be the Big Trend at IBS?

    We begin our online coverage of the 2010 International Builders' Show today with an advance look at some of the window and door industry products to be featured at the upcoming event.  That got me thinking about the show, and wondering what it holds in store for us in January.Every year, it seems one trend hits some sort of tipping point and takes center stage for the many window and door ... more »
  • November 25, 2009
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    A Bit of a Black Friday?

    Forget the Big Mac Index, or even the Starbucks Latte Index. This gal is more interested in my self-proclaimed Black Friday Index. I've made a tradition of sorts here at Window & Door by admitting openly that I'm a Black Friday fanatic. My mother and I have been planning the post-turkey shopping spree for months now. And even though I had to write a check for an unexpected car ... more »
  • November 16, 2009
    THE TALK... | Codes & Standards

    Will We See More Charges of Greenwashing?

    Most industry executives I've talked to view the green building movement as an opportunity, but they have also been cautious about it. It's easy to see why now, based on developments at last week's Greenbuild show. Three window manufacturers found themselves in the crosshairs of an environmental group, accused of greenwashing because of where they source their lumber. Now I wouldn't claim that ... more »