Tax Credits are Gone and Value-Added Selling is Back!

Jan 28th, 2014

As our calendars turned that final page to 2014, tax credits for energy-efficient doors and windows have ended. Over the past few years, many door and window consumers have been focused on qualifying for these tax credits. They have been focused mainly on the Energy Star label itself, since Energy Star eventually became the qualifying [...]

Sales Training … Demonstrate Superiority over the Competition

Jan 7th, 2014

So another year begins and the Midwest is off to one of the coldest starts ever, thanks to the Polar Vortex! This will definitely put a hamper on January sales figures, which are normally slow to begin with in this part of the country. So, what is the best way to utilize the extra time [...]

Optimism Abounds For 2014

Dec 12th, 2013

Well, only two more weeks and 2013 will be in the history books. One thing that impressed me about 2013 is that despite market conditions that are still challenging, customers found a way to grow their businesses. While a few manufacturers are reporting a flat year, most are reporting growth for the year of anywhere [...]

Wide-Angle Marketing Insight

Nov 14th, 2013

Last week I visited a major prospect to pitch a high-end composite window technology. When I entered their conference room, I was surprised to find that I wasn’t the only guest. Our prospect had invited one of its major dealers to sit in on the presentation, so we were no longer presenting to just our [...]

Section 179 – Maximizing the Bang for Your Equipment Buck

Oct 22nd, 2013

The fourth quarter is an excellent time to finalize equipment purchases. Based upon year-to-date (YTD) financial results, management can get a pretty good idea if investment in equipment or software is in the cards, so to speak. It is also a very good time to study YTD production efficiency results and to determine if new [...]

A Fresh Perspective on the NFRC

Oct 3rd, 2013

Attending the NFRC meeting last week as a guest speaker provided me with a fresh perspective on this organization and how it is eager to expand and broaden participation among manufacturers of fenestration products. Back in the day, I attended NFRC meetings when the organization was in its infancy. I have seen our industry transform [...]

The Magic of Venue

Sep 19th, 2013

Well, I am back in the office this week after spending an exhausting week in Atlanta at the GlassBuild Show. Was it worth it? Well, I am comparing my pile of leads vs. last year’s Vegas show. The pile is measurably higher and the leads are definitely stronger! Face it – this is why we [...]

The Fall Selling Season–Time to Get Your Game On!

Sep 3rd, 2013

Well, Labor Day is over and the fenestration fall selling season is just around the corner! Many window dealers have expressed concern that July and August numbers were not quite what they wanted to see, but, I say, don’t worry. It is the fall selling season that really counts. The kids are back in school, [...]

Energy Efficiency: How Much Vision Do You Have?

Jul 30th, 2013

An energy-efficiency explosion is looming on the horizon. Will you be ready? When I visit with presidents, owners, CEOs and engineering directors of various door and window companies, I see three types of philosophies with respect to addressing energy-efficiency standards. There are the first responders, the visionaries and the cleanup crew. The first responders are [...]

Looking Ahead

Jul 16th, 2013

The summer lull is a good time to begin planning exercises for next year. Yes, now is the time of year when business leaders begin the process of formulating strategic plans for 2014. This process first involves projecting how the current year is likely to finish, followed by the formulation of goals and projections for [...]