Plavecsky’s Ponderings

Training – More Important Today Than Ever

Feb 17th, 2021

Today, I was asking a department head about a certain purchasing agent that I had not heard from in a while. I found out that she was promoted. “Oh, great,” I said, “What is her new position?” I asked. “She was promoted to trainer,” he said. This singular statement made me ponder the importance of […]

Passing Gas

Feb 4th, 2021

Passing the gas retention portion of the insulating glass (IG) certification test can be a challenge. It is a very demanding test. The IG units must average 90% fill rate at the beginning of the test and 80% after, while enduring a rigorous series of weather cycling procedures. Here are four tips to help you […]

Staying Ahead of the Curve

Jan 21st, 2021

It is the start of a new year and a new race for superiority in the marketplace. Door and window manufacturers are just exiting the starting gate. So, in 2021 what factors will help win the race? There are three: 1). Lead Time I asked a handful of my window customers if I order windows […]

Sharpening the Saw

Jan 7th, 2021

Many of my customers were still so busy at the end of the year that they had to forego their annual plant shutdowns. This is a “good news – bad news” scenario. The good news is: They were so busy they could not afford to shut down their plants. The bad news is: They could […]

One Word

Dec 17th, 2020

As the holidays approach and 2020 winds down, I reached out to industry associates and asked them what one word they would use to describe 2020. The answers I received were “uncertain, unbelievable, isolated, confused, transformational, volatile, stolen, exigent, adaptive, evolutionary, arduous, fortunate, prosperous, exhausting, and unforgettable.” Yes, I remember in March when the virus […]

In 2021 Expect the Expected

Dec 3rd, 2020

This time last year, I was making predictions for 2020. I predicted that it was going to be a strong year for the window and door industry with single—if not double-digit—growth. The one factor that I said could stand in the way was an “unexpected” event. Well, as we all know, the unexpected did happen. The […]

Not Sure if Your IG Units Can Make the Grade? Just Dunk Them!

Nov 19th, 2020

With skilled labor being such a big issue these days, window fabricators have lost some of their key people this year. Some were furloughed during plant shutdowns and never returned for a variety of reasons. So, one of the ugly things I have noticed this year is that it seems like there may be an […]

Help Desperately Wanted

Nov 5th, 2020

As 2019 was coming to a close, I predicted that 2020 would be another strong year. Yet, I cautioned, “Unless something unexpected happens!” Well it happened! So, when the pandemic unfolded in March, I thought, “Well, this year is really going to come off the tracks … demand for doors and windows is really going […]

The Value of Forecasting and Strategic Partnerships

Oct 15th, 2020

Well if someone would have told me back in April that six months from then I would be helping customers deal with material and component issues (in October) I would have given them that “deer in the headlights” look for sure.  Indeed, back in April my train of thought was more like, “How will I […]

Employee Retention—Keep Your Keepers

Oct 1st, 2020

As I meet and talk with door and window manufacturers, a common theme this year is that they seem to have plenty of orders but not enough muscle on the production side of their businesses. There is clearly a disconnect between windows ordered and windows that can be made. The problems with production break down […]

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