Operations

Ep.200: The Partnership Between Owner and Production Manager

Season 2 Starts With This Special Episode Recorded Live at The Remodelers Summit!

Listen to this episode and get tips on creating an effective and highly functional relationship between company ownership and the production team.  Clark Harris and Eric Bain of Innovative Construction discuss how they have built an open, trusting, and team-based relationship that allows them to work effectively together while creating a culture for innovation, growth, and change.  

Innovative Construction is a high-end design firm in Atlanta, GA, with the goal of improving lives through design, craftsmanship, and teamwork.  Clark and Eric run their organization with a philosophy of “do it badly and improve.”  They do this with a relationship of openness and trust.

Join Clark, Eric, Tim, and Steve as they discuss:

  • Radical Candor
  • Failure as a growth opportunity
  • Overcoming challenges and fears
  • And more…

The Impact Your Production Team Has on Marketing with Spencer Powell – [Best of The Tim Faller Show]

Raise your hand if you are a salesperson… Maybe a few business owners raised their hands, but most likely, our production people and our Project managers, Lead carpenters, and Production managers all kept their hands down. Not so fast!

In this episode, we step out of our comfort zone a little and talk about your production teams’ impact on sales and marketing. For this discussion, we bring in an expert in the marketing world who has worked with hundreds of remodelers and home builders all over the country, Spencer Powell.

Spencer is the President of Builder Funnel, a Colorado-based firm that provides sales and marketing services for homebuilders, remodelers & contractors. Spencer earned his Inbound Marketing, HubSpot, and HubSpot Partner Certifications in 2010 and has been practicing and teaching inbound marketing to businesses ever since.

Tim, Steve, and Spencer talk more about:

  • The impact production has on the Client Experience
  • The Top 3 things that will create negatives in the clients’ mind
  • The Top 3 things that create a positive reaction with a client
  • How the production team can create vital content for the marketing effort
  • How owners and leaders can get buy-in from the team and show the impact they have on the business

Let’s Revisit Zero Punch List Production with Mike Volochuk – [Best of The Tim Faller Show]

On our third episode, in March of 2018, we talked with Mike Barkhouse from Amsted Design Build about achieving “Zero Punch List” production.

We heard from a few listeners about that episode, and the concept of Zero Punch List, so we wanted to revisit it. We are now evangelists pushing to see the term “Punch list” eliminated from the remodeler’s vocabulary.  In a zero punch list scenario, after a project, no items remain to be addressed or “punched” because the items will have been addressed during the project and not at the project’s end.

A punch list is so ingrained within the industry that it is tricky to conceive of not having one. Every blog article about working with a contractor says something about that punch list. Usually, “Don’t pay until it is done.”

Our guest for this episode is Mike Voloschuk, Production Manager at Hurst Design Build Remodel in Westlake, Ohio. Mike is a member of our Roundtables for Production Managers peer group, and when he mentioned how his firm had adopted the Zero Punch strategy, we invited him to join us and discuss it.

Mike has been with Hurst since 2008 and moved from Carpenter to Production Manager.

Tim, Steve, and Mike talk more about:

  • Background on Hurst Design Build Remodel (size of projects, type of work, etc.).
  • Why Hurst moved to Zero Punch List production.
  • How Hurst made the transition and how the team reacted and adapted to the change.
  • How Hurst is doing with the new production mindset and how the clients have responded.
  • And more…

Hindsight is 2020 with Tim Faller and Steve Wheeler- [Best of The Tim Faller Show]

If you’ve ever wondered what you’d do differently when starting your remodeling business if you only knew then what you know now, you’re not alone. 

Tim and Steve do, too. 

In this episode, the guys talk about what they’ve learned in their time at Remodelers Advantage and from their podcast guests that they wish they knew when they were running their own businesses.

They each identified the five biggest takeaways that make remodeling businesses stronger, more profitable, and built for growth. Learn what they think is important and why, including:

  • The power of job descriptions
  • Being financially transparent
  • Protecting profit through data
  • Making business decisions based on numbers, not feelings
  • Learning to sell, not just take orders
  • Getting to a zero punch list
  • And more …

Special Guest Kevin O’Connor of “This Old House” [Best of the Tim Faller Show]

Television is full of construction and remodeling shows, but we all know many of them leave false impressions of how fast and easy the process can be. But the pioneering program, This Old House, still shows viewers how complicated it can be.

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the program, and they’re tackling a net-zero retrofit, a mid-century modern remodel, and spearheading outreach programs to get more workers into the trades.

In this episode, Kevin O’Connor, host of the Emmy Award-winning This Old House and Ask This Old House, talks with Tim and Steve about what you see on TV, and how it helps the construction industry as a whole.

Kevin has appeared on the two shows since 2003, and serves on the editorial board of This Old House magazine. He also hosts This New House airing on the DIY Network and Hidden History in Your House airing on the History Channel’s H2 network. Along with his four brothers and two sisters, Kevin grew up on various job sites led by his father, a civil engineer. When Kevin and his wife, Kathleen, were renovating their 1892 Queen Anne Victorian they sent an e-mail seeking advice from the Ask This Old House experts. The house call served as Kevin’s first screen test to serve as the new host (the third host in the history of the home-improvement series).

Kevin talks about the evolution of the show and about the Generation NEXT campaign, cosponsored by the mikeroweWORKS Foundation. It’s a high-profile effort to close the skills gap in the trades, encouraging young people to master those skills and look at construction careers. He also talks about the challenges of working on a job site that’s also a TV shoot, including:

  • Scheduling
  • Scrambling and adapting
  • More about the show’s two projects this season
  • How the show’s contractors juggle TV and their businesses
  • Using their big megaphone
  • And more…
 

Ep.198: Becoming a Memorable Leader with Howard Prager

Howard Prager joins the show to talk about how memorable leadership can help retain good employees, increase productivity and improve customer service.  He outlines his VIP model of leadership, which is easy to apply, proven effective, and will help create a company with which customers will want to do business and employees will want to work.

Howard Prager is president of Advance Learning Group, the author of the book Make Someone’s Day Becoming a Memorable Leader in Work and Life, speaker, executive coach, and consultant who helps managers become memorable leaders.  He has worked extensively with Fortune 500 companies as well as numerous small businesses and has won multiple professional awards for his work. 

Tim, Steve, and Howard talk more about:

  • Characteristics of a leader
  • Leadership vs. Management
  • And more…..

Ep.197: From Project Manager to Production Manager with Morgan Thomas

Join Tim and Steve as they talk to Morgan Thomas about her role as a production manager at Leff Design Build.  Morgan discusses how she had to shift her focus from individual projects to looking at the business on a global level, and from solving problems herself to coaching others on how to solve them.

Morgan was born and raised in Sonoma County, and after moving out of state to pursue a degree in Journalism from Gonzaga University, she returned to Sonoma County and landed in a career in commercial construction management.  She then found her way LEFF, where she worked her way up to become the company’s production manager.

Tim, Steve, and Morgan talk more about:

  • The differences between Project and Production managers
  • Tools needed by a Production Manager
  • And more…….

Ep.196: Inventory Management on the Go With Selema Lawson-Jack

Selema Lawson-Jack joins the show and discusses how she found a technology fix to solve an inventory management issue, but was able to expand its capabilities to create efficiencies across the organization, and generate revenue at the same time.  She talks about how Sortly, the affordable app she implemented, operates and how she was able to successfully integrate it into the organization.

 

Selema works for Schroeder Design Build of Fairfax, VA and is the Director of Production, where she oversees all projects in the construction phase.  She is the first point of contact on job sites and leads a team of project managers, project developers and carpenters. She was recently named to Pro Remodeler’s top 40 under 40.

 

Tim, Steve, and Selema talk more about:

  • Organizing inventory using Sortly
  • How Sortly improves the processes for the team
  • And more……

Ep.195: Using AI in Home Remodeling with Ben Ranta

Guest Ben Ranta joins the show to discuss his experiences with Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the remodeling industry. Ben talks about how the AI software, Otter, is used for client meetings and how it helps his company, Forward Design Build be more effective in meeting client demands. He also discusses how he dealt with pushback when Otter was implemented.

Ben left his desk job in 2019 to pursue a career in the trades and joined Forward Design Build Remodel in Ann Arbor, Michigan. After about 18 months as a carpenter, Ben then changed gears and became a Project Manager.

Tim, Steve, and Ben talk more about:

  • How AI is used for client meetings
  • Any pushbacks from clients and co-workers
  • And more….. 

Ep.190: Stop the Runs! (Lumberyard runs that is) with Paul Wurth

Making multiple trips to the lumber yard for construction material is both disruptive to jobsite progress and very costly. By stopping all material runs your business can save thousands of dollars on labor, gas, vehicles and much more.  Guest Paul Wurth is here to share how to stop making these unnecessary trips and save your company money in the long run.

Paul Wurth is the Chief Revenue Officer at the technology startup, RenoRun! RenoRun provides a simple, cost effective way to help contractors stop multiple trips to get construction material, saving time and money. 

Tim, Steve and Paul talk more about:

  • Technology in relation to remodeling
  • Identifying costly behaviors 
  • And more…