Each year, Remodeling (Magazine) holds a joint training and awards ceremony at the Ritz Carlton, Pentagon City, VA, for 'The top 50" remodeling companies from around the country, with other professionally committed remodelers. This was my first year to attend as an "other" attendee and I want to share a fabulous experience through this blog. Remodeling Magazine's parent company and pulishing giant, Hanley Wood, ensures that the event is well sponsored by some of the country's major building material suppliers. Home Depot, Marvin Windows, Behr Paint, Wellborn Cabinets (Alabama family-owned), Diablo, and Lenox were among the heavy hitter sponsors this year. The sponsor's representatives were present for the entire event and were as friendly and professional as they could be as they educated the conference participants on their products. The "leadership" aspect of the conference was geared towards educating the remodeling company owners and chief operators on sales, marketing, social media forms, labor laws, and client-contractor relations. A major clarification, or qualification, has to be made for the above; our average company owner is "Ma", and the chief operator's are "Pa". This aspect of owner-operator dyanmics make these events extremely valuable towards the professional growth and welfare of these entrepreneurs. The two major remodeling publications of Hanley Wood are the Journal of Light Construction (JLC) and Remodeling. Their mission is promote technical education and product information within the remodeling and small construction industry (mainly residential). One of my wife's best friends is an patent attorney and she loves reading the Journal of Light Construction for its expert delivery of pertinant and easily understood content. I had the immense pleasure of finally meeting Chief Editor, Sal Alfano, during the conference and sharing this with him. My favorite guest speakers during the 2 day sales and marketing training were Mr. Sam Geist, the high octane presentation of Mr. Andrew Davis, Author of Brandscaping, and Mr. Mark Hunter, Author of "The Sales Hunter". Our closing speaker was Mr. Al Walker. Al is a fine, fine Southern Gentleman from South Carolina, and he specializes in motivational speaking by sharing his life stories and helping the target audience get geared up at returning home and tackling their respective professional challenges. The most important topics/issues that I gleaned from the conference that significantly impact my day to day operations are client-contractor relationships, dynamics of the "sale", self-identity (branding), and execution. All of these topics/issues are researchable in Remodeling and JLC and I promise to review them as often as I can. Mr. Walker left us all with a very useful remodeling pledge with the use of the acronym, "A.P.I.L.L". It stands for being Authentic in practice, have a Positive expectancy of outcome, assume Ignorance and strive for further education, Love what you do, and Love your accomplishments.
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