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Strategy – Alignment – Execution! #letsgo
Okay friends, raise your hand if you are tired of hearing all the business buzzwords that relate to an organization’s strategy. While the mission, vision, values, quality policy and purpose statements of organizations are critical, they are often misaligned when compared closely with the consumer’s reality.
How can this be? Well, I read this on the internet, so it must be true (Ha!). According to Larry Myler, in his article Strategy 101: It’s All About Alignment, Larry quoted the following statistic:
Wow! Who knew? Let’s be honest with ourselves, we all know this to be relatively true. However, as leaders, the real question we must ask ourselves is, “How do we obtain proper alignment and remain properly aligned?”
I’d like to challenge you to think about the following C’s as it relates to alignment:
We all say we have it! We all say we do it! But, we are all human, and by the very nature of admitting such, we often fall short on delivering consistently on character. Before you get upset with me, let me clarify my position. It is easier for an individual to have character, versus the organizations that we work in and work with on a daily basis to have character.
Is it impossible for an organization to align its character with what is plastered all over the corporate office and its website? Of course not, but that is where true leadership comes in. Yes, leaders must have authority to develop strategy, but they must also work tirelessly to gain influence and buy-in with all constituents who are both front-facing to the consumer as well as those who support the organization behind the scenes. An organization without a consistent alignment of character will find themselves only as good as its weakest touch point.
You’ve heard it! “We must all be on the same page.” “We must all row in the same direction.” This is 100% true, however you must first pull back the covers on the real culture of your organization. What do you mean Kevin? I mean you must realize that your company’s traits can change your company’s atmosphere, which ultimately can and will change the outcomes of your strategy. To tackle this, you must be totally honest with yourself about how well you communicate, accept change, break down silos, embrace diversity and create an environment conducive to winning. Your consumer will see and feel your culture before you do! Take time to work on your culture. It’s not a set-it and forget-it discipline!
Once you have the strategy figured out and you have the culture to support it, you must execute. Execution requires capability. Capability requires passion and care for your craft and for the entire progress of the organization.
Before you stop reading this article, let me clear something up. I’m not saying that everyone in your organization must be great at strategy, but I am saying that everyone must be capable of moving the organization forward in their own way. Not by passing the buck, or saying “that’s not my job”, alignment requires leadership, understanding and collaboration of everyone to achieve what you said you were going to do in the first place.
So, why the disconnect? It’s strictly due to alignment! If one of your four wheels is pulling to the left or right – guess what? – the entire car will pull to the left or right, even when the strategy clearly says to stay straight ahead.
Alignment is the bread and butter of business success. Give it its proper attention if you really want to succeed! #letsgo
Positivity Guru, Value Adder, Keynote Speaker & SVP
Contractors Mark NADRA’s Deck Safety Month® in May with CAMO Edge Fastening for Safer, Barefoot-Friendly Deck Surfaces
CAMO Edge Fastening teams with the North American Deck and Railing Association, Inc. (NADRA) to promote “Deck Safety Month®” with ways to improve the safety of your deck using better installation techniques and materials.
GRAND RAPIDS, MI (PRWEB) MAY 18, 2017
CAMO Edge Fastening joined forces with the North American Deck and Railing Association, Inc. (NADRA), in supporting Deck Safety Month® in May to help increase public awareness of the necessity for regular inspection and maintenance of existing decks, and proper installation of new decks. National Nail’s CAMO Edge Fastening is one technology that can help contractors make decks safer for homeowners.
Unlike traditional fasteners that are nailed or screwed through the top or face of the deck board, the proprietary Edge Fastening system guides the unique CAMO® screws through the edge of the boards. Applying the screws in this manner eliminates the safety issues normally associated with traditional face fastening. Edge fastening greatly reduces the cracking and splitting of deck boards that leads to splinters while also eliminating the common issue of nails and screws working themselves out of the deck board surface. Scott Baker, CEO and President of National Nail states, “Splinters, nails and screw pops find their way into the feet of unsuspecting guests. Families don’t want to turn their fun, outdoor event into a first aid lesson. That’s why we say CAMO® is barefoot approved™.”
Another safety advantage to CAMO Edge Fastening is the holding power of the deck board is greatly improved due to the angle which the screws enter the deck board and attach directly to the sub-structure. This system virtually eliminates deck board movement which is a common problem with deck clips. “With CAMO, you get a solid, stable board. If there is ever an issue with a board I can back the screws out to replace it where I can’t with typical hidden clips,” said Billy Lecorchick, owner of Legends Home Improvements in Monroe, NJ.
“Contractors or homeowners using wood, composites or PVC are fastening their decks with CAMO Edge Fastening for safer, fastener-free surfaces,” said Greg Palmer, Director of Marketing, National Nail/CAMO. “Edge-fastened decks prevent fastener caused splitting or cracking that increases weather and moisture access to the deck material– which can add to and increase degradation of the deck board. The deck surface is also safer for bare feet with no raised screw heads, which can also get hot in the sun. These are all important safety factors for homeowners. “
Chris Warren of Warren Builders, State College, PA, agrees and said, “With the new wave of composites and pvcs, no one screws deck boards the old-fashioned way anymore. The edge-fastened decks do not allow water seepage into exposed openings around face-screws or into cracks or splits.”
To learn more about deck safety, visit NADRA’s website at http://www.NADRA.org for their video and Check Your Deck® – 10-Point Safety Checklist. For more information about CAMO Edge Fastening visit http://www.camofasteners.com.
About CAMO Edge Fastening
CAMO Edge Fastening™ from National Nail delivers beautiful, fastener-free, Barefoot Approved™ results with virtually any wood, composite or PVC decking. CAMO® offers a variety of guides, fasteners, and accessories, as well as a collated system to suit project requirements. For more information or to locate a dealer, visit CAMO Fasteners or call 1-800-968-6245. Be sure to “Like” CAMO® Fasteners on Facebook.
Our mindset and our actions directly affect our customer’s experience.
Every waking moment, either consciously or unconsciously, we make decisions that affect our lives, our families, our work, our customer’s experiences and ultimately our take home pay. A major choice, with residual impact, is whether we decide to have a positive outlook or a negative demeanor.
Okay, I’m sure you can guess where I’m going with this. However, let’s stack hands and agree on something. Every day is not going to be a sun-shiny day, but our emotions and our reactions to these emotions can and will add to our success or contribute to our demise. Taking this a step further, I’m going to suggest that positivity could eventually lead to profit. If you don’t believe me, check out these five domino effect principles:
Limiting our intake of negative influences
In the era of always being plugged in, there is a gem in finding some personal time to prepare for the day ahead of us without the news, newspaper, social media and the like. Often our days are started with the weight of the world on our shoulders before we even have the opportunity to deal with our own issues. Being intentional and deliberate about limiting negative influences open a pathway to a more thoughtful and calculated day. Our families, friends, co-workers and customers will notice something very different about us if we implement this. Try it!
Not selling, but letting others see our passion and the value we bring
Everyone has a blue widget and a red widget to sell. However, what consumers are looking for is value. If we are not providing value, we are not providing anything. Quality customer care requires a quality attitude from those who are providing the service. As a result, organizations are only as strong as their weakest link and their weakest link may actually be on a consecutive streak of bad days! To consistently turn a profit, we must consistently show our passion to solve our customer’s needs and consistently do this all with a smile.
Staying poised under pressure
We are all under a tremendous amount of pressure. That’s the way of the world we live in. However, those who consistently remain poised in the time of trial are those who are rehired, referred and remembered. It’s so easy to lose our cool if we get up on the wrong side of the bed. However, losing our cool could mean losing a client and ultimately losing profit.
Following up, following-through and following up again
Communication is key in all relationships. However, there is a major difference between communication ending in a positive experience and miscommunication ending in an “I’ll never do business with them again” experience. Gold medal communicators understand the importance of anticipating and addressing customer grievances before they become an issue. They constantly think as if they were the consumer and try to stay one step ahead of the customer’s expectations throughout the entire process. Regardless of what’s happening in their personal lives, they are pleasant, prepared, responsive and grateful for the business. In addition, when the work is completed, they follow up again to give a sincere thank you and to ensure all customer requirements have been met and/or have been exceeded.
Working tirelessly to establish and maintain the “Wow Factor”
Optimistic value-providers never rest on their laurels. Every day is an opportunity to be better than they were yesterday. Positivity, passion, action and follow up create the “Wow Factor.” The “Wow Factor” contributes to the building of the brand. The brand promise and its delivery ultimately leads to sustainable success, and of course, profit!
Boom! Drop the mic! Now, do you believe me? A positive attitude drives positive actions. Positive actions drive positive results and a positive bottom line. Got it? Let’s do this!
Executive Vice President
Email address: Info@NADRA.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Love Spending Time Outdoors? Check Your Deck®
During Deck Safety Month® and throughout the year, homeowners can take advantage of resources and tools from the North American Decking and Railing Association to ensure the security and longevity of their decks.
Quakertown, PA (May 1st, 2017) – May is Deck Safety Month ® , the perfect time for homeowners to ensure their decks are in top condition for the season ahead. The North American Decking and Railing Association (NADRA) invites consumers to Check Your Deck ® using resources such as the 10-Point Consumer Checklist.
“Of the 40 million residential decks in the U.S., it’s estimated that half of them are more than 25 years old. It’s crucial for homeowners to verify the integrity of their deck to ensure user safety as well as help extend the deck’s life-span, improve appearance, and increase livability,” says Michael Beaudry, executive vice president of NADRA. “We’re proud to offer an array of tools to help consumers check their decks as well as connect with building professionals with the know-how to identify and remedy potential problems.”
Consumers can visit www.NADRA.org to take advantage of resources to Check Your Deck ® , including:
- 10-Point Checklist: Homeowners can download the 10-Point Deck Safety Consumer Checklist , a step-by-step guide to visually inspecting the deck for safety concerns such as corroding fasteners, decaying materials, loose railings, inadequate lighting, and more. Though not a replacement for a professional deck inspection, the checklist is a helpful tool to assist homeowners.
- Find an Inspector: NADRA and the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI) offer building professionals the NADRA Deck Inspection Certification Course, which certifies the recipient has undergone training specific to conducting proper, thorough deck inspections. Consumers can search for a certified inspector in their area by browsing the Inspectors Directory at www.NADRA.org.
- Find a Builder: NADRA deck builders adhere to a strict code of ethics and are required to submit proof of licensing and insurance as required by their state. Homeowners can search for qualified deck builders at www.NADRA.org.
Learn More: Consumers can watch videos and read more about deck safety on NADRA’s consumer Deck Safety page and on the NADRA blog.
“We encourage homeowners to reach out to ASHI-certified home inspectors and NADRA-member deck builders to conduct an inspection of their older deck,” says Beaudry. “NADRA members follow a code of ethics and comply with state licensing and insurance requirements, providing peace of mind.”
Visit www.NADRA.org to access all of NADRA’s Deck Safety Month® resources.
The North American Decking and Railing Association is the voice of the decking industry, representing the interests of deck builders, inspectors, and manufacturers alike. NADRA’s mission is to provide a unified source for the professional development, promotion, growth, and sustenance of the deck and railing building industry in North America so that members can exceed the expectations of their customers. www.NADRA.org
© Copyright 2017 North American Deck and Railing Association. All rights reserved.
CHECK YOUR DECK® THIS MAY
BY WOLF HOME PRODUCTS | 05.01.2017
Wolf Home Products is proud to partner with NADRA, the North American Deck and Railing Association, this month to recognize Deck Safety Month® to promote outdoor living in a beautiful and safe environment.
For many, May marks the unofficial start to summer. This means it’s time to get outside to work in the garden and start cleaning up the deck for summer BBQs. In addition to having a clean deck, it’s important to make sure you have a safe deck. Wolf and NADRA recommend homeowners Check Your Deck® this May before kicking off summer activities.
There are an estimated 40 million residential and 10 million commercial decks in the United States, with 50% of them being more than 20 years old. To ensure the safety of your family and friends, it’s important for homeowners to check their decks on a yearly basis. Outdoor structures like decks are exposed to sun, rain, snow and extreme temperature changes over the years. The need to maintain and inspect them is critical for keeping decks strong and safe and helps to avoid possible collapses.
NADRA offers a 10-Point Consumer Safety Checklist, which is an efficient way to take a good look at the different parts of the deck, with an eye to what might need maintenance, repair or replacement. Below are 10 parts to examine when you Check Your Deck®:
- Split or decaying wood
- Loose or corroded fasteners
- Railings and banisters
- Cleaning and maintenance
- Grills, fire pits, chimneys, heaters, and candles
- Lighting and electrical
- Outdoor furniture and storage
- Surrounding trees
Homeowners should also consider a professional deck inspection. A professional inspector will thoroughly examine your deck, provide information on your deck’s capacity limits, identify any dangerous problem areas and give you some insight into what to keep your eye on in the future.
It’s important to remember that older decks require closer scrutiny and regular inspections. Many decks were built before code requirements were established to protect consumers. Some of these older decks may have deck-to-house attachments using only nails instead of the current recommended construction using deck tension hardware that greatly helps in the prevention of ledger failures.
Once you Check Your Deck® and ensure it’s safe, grab your friends and fire up that grill for your first BBQ of the summer!
SKOKIE, IL—AZEK® Building Products, a leader in the development of premium composite decking, is raising awareness alongside the North American Decking and Railing Association (NADRA) this May for Deck Safety Month®. As summer approaches and people begin to enjoy their outdoor living spaces, it is the ideal time to address and fix any poorly maintained or unsafe decking structures.
“Decks are exposed to sun, rain, snow and extreme temperature changes throughout the seasons and the years,” said Julia Fitzgerald, chief marketing officer of AZEK Building Products. “May is a great time to remind everyone to inspect decks for safe outdoor entertaining. Safety is our number one priority so our decking is scientifically engineered to stand up to the elements and remain sturdy, reliable, and splinter free for years. Likewise, our railing is not only beautiful, it’s low-maintenance as it is sturdy.”
Here are the top tips to ensure a safe deck:
- Identify Instability – There should be no sagging, swaying or movement of the deck boards, railings or stairs, and the board attaching the deck to the house should be securely in place.
- Inspect Railings – The IRC requires railings to be at least 36’’ in height, measured from the deck surface to the top of the rail. Also look for loose balusters or post caps which could present a hazard.
- Get up to Code – Check that the deck, electrical outlets and appliances are up to code, and that no electrical cords present a tripping or fire hazard. Inspect grills, fire pits and heaters at the start of the season.
- Examine Boards and Fasteners – Check for splitting, rotting or decay. Look for rust on nails, screws and fasteners; a corroded fastener can cause deterioration in surrounding materials.
“Homeowners who have an AZEK® or TimberTech® deck don’t have to worry about many of the traditional performance issues wood decks present,” said Fitzgerald. “Our products are protected with advanced polymer materials which make them resistant to mold, mildew and moisture damage. Also, our railing collections are certified to meet the International Building Code, and International Residential Code for load bearing and other universal safety considerations. Wood just can’t compete when it comes to long lasting safety and durability.”
Read the original article from AZEK® here
Can curiosity lead to profit?
By: Kevin Jackson
Absolutely! Curiosity sparks creativity. Creativity leads to innovation. Innovation helps you to increase your odds of continued existence and positions you well to be profitable.
However, there is one monumental roadblock that stands in our way. It’s huge, it’s daunting, it’s ever-present! It’s something that leaders all throughout the world deal with on a daily basis.
I’m talking about when companies, organizations, governments and the people that operate them, live in and accept the status-quo! As consumers of products and services ourselves, we often notice status-quo operating in abundance. If your experiences are anything like mine, several times a week I wonder to myself how so many organizations continue to exist.
Walter Elias Disney (Walt) leveraged the power of curiosity and as a result has subsequently touched all of our lives in some capacity. The ongoing reinvention of the original Disney story makes the company itself one to be studied.
In my experience, there are five ways to combat the status-quo:
- Address, reduce or eliminate the fear of change. Easy to say, very hard to do!
- Make creativity and innovation a priority. If you don’t, you may one day wake up not having anything to prioritize!
- Get laser-focused and not only work in your business, but work on your business. Got it? Good!
- Seek answers to uncommonly asked questions. This will often result in transformational ideas for your organization.
- Trust your instinct, go with your gut and stay relevant.
Curiosity may have killed the cat, but it also made a lot of organization’s very profitable. As leaders we must always balance our pipeline of ideas with our actual bandwidth of people, places, money and time. However, it is very clear that curiosity can lead to profit with the proper evaluation and implementation. We must do all of this to survive!
Onward and upward my friends! Now get back out there and do great things!
February 2017 Member Benefits Tips:
NADRA Members Benefit by Earning NADRA Bucks
NADRA has used a grass-roots approach at expanding and growing the association since 2004. It not only saves the association money, but also saves our members money too. Do you know that for every new member
(branch excluded) you refer, you will receive $50.00 towards your membership?
Yes, you earn $50.00 for a new member referral! We call them NADRA bucks. You are eligible to earn up to your yearly dues in NADRA bucks. When you refer a new member, it means you are referring professionals that you have already built a relationship with. They are businesses you believe in.
If you are a deck builder you might suggest your local lumberyard, retailer or distributor to join. As a manufacturer you could be referring your pro builders and dealers to join NADRA. Referrals are not limited to manufacturers, builders or distributors / dealers. Industry Service Providers are a fantastic resource for our members, and we encourage you to refer business services that you value.
How many NADRA Bucks have you earned? It’s easy to earn a free membership with NADRA. This type of word of mouth referrals is the foundation that helps build NADRA.
Will you help us continue to grow?
All you need to do is simply have the new member fill in your name under “referred by” found in the application.
Support, refer, and save!
January 2017 Member Benefits Tips:
- Step 1. You learn more about the gym & what is included with your membership. You can check out the exercise machines, weights, and other equipment. They all come with your membership so you want to utilize them. NADRA too has basic benefits like a free profile page, photo gallery and the option to download the NADRA logo for marketing.Step 2. Learn what additional programs are offered. In a gym setting you can get more instructions with a TRX or boxing class, sometimes even take a class in nutrition. Similarly, you can get more involved with NADRA by joining and/or supporting programs such as Deck Safety Month®, Deck For a Soldier®, and Educational Certifications.
- Step 3. Get involved with networking events. Staying healthy is strongly supported when you surround yourself with like-minded people. Same goes for surrounding yourself with professionals who can help take your business to the next level. Sign up for golf tournaments, trade shows, seminars and more. Per NADRA members, “…networking is one of the top reasons to be a member!”
- Step 4. Stay connected! When you join a gym you can often sign up for newsletters or like them on Facebook. This allows you to stay in contact and learn about upcoming events. Likewise, NADRA has a weekly eNewsletter, Facebook page, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Follow us on one or all, but be sure to stay connected!
- Step 5. Get your family and friends involved. Gyms often have incentives to bring your friends and family to the gym. NADRA too, has an incentive program called “NADRA Bucks”. For any new member, excluding branch memberships, we offer $50 towards your next renewal.
March is here, and that means we’re entering “Home Show Season”. It’s the end of the winter, the early customers are calling and inquiring. Now is our last chance to button-up any policies, procedures, and give our companies one last “spring cleaning” before the rush!
A few questions to ask yourself:
- Is there any last-minute education to wrap up?
- Are all of our vendor agreements in place?
- Are your trucks and trailers lettered and in good shape?
- Are you displaying the NADRA logo and pledge on your marketing materials? (stand out from the competition!)
- Are your business cards printed with updated industry certifications and social media information?
- Do you have marketing pieces ready?
- Jobsite signs in good shape?
- Crew T-shirts and hats stocked?
- Do you have a good camera for your before and after pictures? Or is this the year to consider adding a drone?
- How is the website, email signature, and voicemail greetings?
If you don’t have these things ready, you have time, but that time is now! Go get it done. You’ll feel better prepared, and at the end of the day, you’ll know you did everything you could to be ready for the season.If you’re wondering where to get the best job-site signs, or you’re not sure where to order your T-shirts, don’t forget to reach out to your fellow NADRA members to ask. That’s what we are here for! Ask away. Use NADRA’s social media platforms to ask questions, hop on LinkedIn to start a discussion, Tweet! Use whatever platform makes it easy for you to ask your question. It’s human nature to want to help. Someone will answer you. Use your NADRA network to better your business. We are here for you.
Your NADRA Board of Directors