The Talk

  • July 16, 2013
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Will You Be Attending This Fall's Trade Shows?

    Each fall, I make the rounds, attending GlassBuild America, the Remodeling Show, the AMD Convention and Exhibition, and Win-Door North America.  I just started making some travel plans and I couldn't help but wonder whether the strengthening market might translate into busier events this year.Now I know many factors besides the economy go into decisions to attend a show. You might have ... more »
  • July 10, 2013
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Is the Real Unemployment Rate Higher?

    Last week, as many of us were enjoying the Fourth of July festivities, the business-minded folks were digesting the news that the government's latest jobs report featured a decent, worthy-of-discussion uptick in June. As we continue to rebound and level out from the extended economic downturn, it's nice to have some additional optimism poured into the system that has affected so many of our ... more »
  • Keeping Productivity High During the Summer Heat

    For most people, the summer season is synonymous with sunny days, a packed social calendar and vacation time. It’s overwhelmingly recognized as the most popular time of year for relaxation, much to the chagrin of business owners everywhere come June 21st. As the temperature rises, and the days get longer, it’s easy for even the most motivated employees to lose enthusiasm, and ... more »
  • June 25, 2013
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    Are You Seeing Window and Door Shortages?

    NAHB and NLBMDA issued a recent report pointing to shortages of certain construction materials in the current market.  While windows and doors are not cited as prime examples, the groups' surveys indicate that our industry's products are harder to come by than usual, at least by historic standards.Nine percent of builders and lumber dealers report seeing some shortages in the market ... more »
  • June 19, 2013
    THE TALK... | Close-Ups

    Are You a Dealer Worthy of Recognition?

    This is sort of a trick question, actually. Any dealer that has weathered the storm of the last few years is likely a dealer worthy of recognition. We've been through a lot with the housing market rollercoaster, and last year's Dealers of the Year winners were stories not only of survival, but also of companies that learned to thrive in the new normal of window and door sales, distribution and ... more »
  • June 11, 2013
    THE TALK... | Markets & Trends

    What's the Rest of the Year Look Like to You?

    "Finally seeing a nice uptick in business!!!!"  That was the sign-off on an email I received this week from an industry supplier, and it was just the kind of nugget I needed to feel better about the next few months.Despite improving economic data–and construction and remodeling industry data suggesting that window and door sales are on the upswing–I continue to hear ... more »
  • June 5, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Are Traditional Salespeople a Dying Breed?

    I know without a doubt that we are a different industry today than we were just six or seven years ago. When I started with the magazine a decade ago, I remember thinking how impressive the really good salespeople were. There was so much information to learn, so many products to embrace and so many different types of customers to approach. These window and door warriors had challenges to ... more »
  • Do You Have an Installation Checklist?

    May is National Home Remodeling Month, and to mark the occasion, the American Architectural Manufacturers Association is urging homeowners to trust their window and door replacement to professional installers. As we all know, qualified installers not only help homeowners avoid the pitfalls associated with DIY installations, they make the window and door replacement process significantly ... more »
  • May 22, 2013
    THE TALK...

    Is Manufacturing In Vogue?

    Guess what, my window and door manufacturer friends—we are now, apparently, cool. According to a recent article in the Crain’s Cleveland Business publication, manufacturing is now “in” among some pockets of teenagers, and it’s not just boys who are looking at what has increasingly become a high-tech segment of our economy.“Modern manufacturing is high-tech, ... more »
  • The Latest Trends in Energy Efficient Home Products

    A recent survey from the National Association of Home Builders found that one of the top factors home buyers look for in a home is energy efficiency. While that might not be a surprise to those of us in the remodeling industry, it certainly reinforces what our customers have been telling us for the past 20 years.With the subject of climate change and green living top of mind, and as some ... more »