In January, we asked our PRIME advisory panel what changes they would like to see in the remodeling industry in 2015. Here's a sampling of their answers.
Did our advisory panel overlook anything you think is important? We'd love to hear about your wish list ideas for 2015. Add them in the Comments section below.
FORMAL TRAINING: Our focus in 2015 is to establish Mosby University, a formalized training program. Knowledge and mastery of various topics, such as company history, trade skills, professional training, and software will be tested, certifi ed, and tracked for each position and employee. This will help our HR folks to better develop our people and fill some gaps in our team skills. —Scott Mosby, president, Mosby Building Arts, St. Louis
EDUCATE AND PROMOTE: Our industry needs to create or support programs that train young men and women in the technical, creative, organizational, and interpersonal skills required for our high-touch, high-quality industry. Our clients have become exponentially better-educated about products and service, and we must stay ahead of them by educating and training those entering our field. It is an honor to be asked into a client’s home and to help change their lives for the better. As an industry we need to expand our message about why young people should choose this dynamic and rewarding profession. —Bill Baldwin, CEO, HartmanBaldwin Design/Build, Claremont, Calif.
PEOPLE AND SERVICE: We cannot control our industry, but we can control our own companies. We all need to slow down and focus on supporting each other. Today’s projects are our future. Never forget that we are in the people and service business. —Gary Marrokal, president, Marrokal Design & Remodeling, San Diego
ACTIVE PARTICIPATION: I think the single most important change we need is more participation from contractors in the political process. Every contractor should not only be a member of a national association, but also an active participant in the process when important issues come up. We are every bit as important as the single-family home building industry, yet both locally and nationally we simply don’t have the same clout. That can only be improved by grassroots organizing, letter writing, phone calling, and donating money to political campaigns and candidates. —Tom Kelly, president, Neil Kelly Inc., Portland, Ore.
SKILLED WORKERS: Finding skilled workers has become difficult due to the increase in new construction, and the fact that, during the recession, many skilled tradesmen found other employment or started doing work on their own. In-house training cuts into production time and puts us further behind schedule. It would be nice to see a training center that could meet this need. —Rob Levin, president, Statewide Remodeling, Dallas-Fort Worth
THE PROFESSIONAL REMODELER PRIME ADVISORY PANEL
PRIME brings together the best-of-the-best minds in the remodeling industry. This premier council of industry leaders sets the trends in today’s economy for tomorrow’s success.
2015 PRIME ADVISORY PANEL MEMBERS: Bill Baldwin, Hartman Baldwin Design/Build; Jay Cipriani, Cipriani Remodeling Solutions; Nick Cogliani, Newpro; Chris Edelen, Consultant; Sal Ferro, Alure Home Improvements; Tom Kelly, Neil Kelly; Joy Kilgore, EBA PRIME; Rob Levin, Statewide Remodeling; Emily Lindus, Lindus Construction; Gary Marrokal, Marrokal Design & Remodeling; Scott Mosby, Mosby Building Arts; Bill Simone, Custom Design & Construction; and Joe Smith, LeafGuard of Central Iowa.