Did you Get a Pay Raise?

Sep 10th, 2012

I got a pay raise yesterday. I received the renewal notice from my health insurance provider, HealthAmerica, and I found an increase in my premiums of 99.4 percent. Of course, this is an increase in overhead expenses for me as a small business owner. But, looking on the bright side, I got a pay raise. [...]

Is Andersen a Dinosaur or an Elephant?

Aug 24th, 2012

There can be no question that Andersen Windows and Doors is very big. Andersen Corp. is one of America’s largest privately held companies with annual revenues estimated at more than $100 billion and more than 10,000 employees. The longevity, size and marketing efforts of Andersen made the company the Kleenex™ of the window business. It [...]

Window and Door Industry from A to Z

Aug 9th, 2012

Every specialized field has their own vocabulary and the door and window industry is no exception. During my sales presentation I talk about things like U-Factor, low-E, DP rating, etc., and it is a foreign language to my clients. I believe translating our language for my clients is essential to the sales process. An educated [...]

A is for AAMA … A Door and Window Word Puzzle

Jul 31st, 2012

Initials are more commonly used than words for many important terms in our industry. I can list several examples for most letters in the alphabet. Do you know the real words that correspond with the initials on this list? A is for AAMA, ABC, AIA, ASCE & ASTM B is for BBB C is for [...]

The Legend of the Grey Couch

Jul 17th, 2012

Since 1950 the Miami Somers Company has been the premiere exterior remodeling company offering energy-efficient doors and windows to property owners along the Jersey Shore from its showroom on Route 9 in Somers Point, N.J. I was down the shore last week and briefly caught up with Charles Zuschnitt, the owner of the Miami Somers [...]

You’re Fired

Jul 2nd, 2012

I fired a man today. Officially, his employment ended following a “terminable infraction” according to our employee handbook. Unofficially, I was personally betrayed. Previous small infractions made by this employee over several years had been documented, addressed and resolved amicably. Each time, I felt this young man was gaining better understanding of his employer’s expectations [...]

Going the Distance

Jun 18th, 2012

When I make a sale at Milanese Remodeling it is a lot like getting to the starting line of a race. First, I had to train and practice to qualify for the race. Then, I step into the starting blocks and run hard from the sound of the starter’s pistol all the way to the [...]

Are Window Dealers Making a Profit?

May 17th, 2012

Hopefully your window dealers’ hard work is paying off right now. Good weather has let them install product. Their phones are ringing from yard signs, they’ve canvassed neighborhoods and done proximity mailing to create leads. Estimates are coming in over the phone and the Internet. They’ve sold more jobs, received deposits and ordered more windows. [...]

Will Your New Dealers Sink or Swim?

Apr 30th, 2012

It seems manufacturers are spending more time and money bringing new dealers aboard. They have to replace dealers who got knocked overboard by the stormy economy and drowned. They need new dealers to make up for ones that jumped ship. Manufacturers are also searching high and low for new dealers in unchartered territories – where [...]

Cutting Costs to Survive

Apr 23rd, 2012

The only way to survive as a manufacturer in today’s stalled economy is to reduce expenses, right? Manufacturers are looking for a better bottom line and reducing expenses to make up for lost revenue. They are slashing customer service expenses, laying-off marketing department staff, delaying the introduction of new products and reducing sales staff. Durasol [...]