Blogs



“Is this chicken, what I have, or is this fish? I know it's tuna, but it says 'Chicken by the Sea.'"

We can thank Jessica Simpson for addressing that puzzling situation. A bit trickier, however, is the mystery centered around Lean design. Let me help clear it up.

Every builder wants to have outstanding customer satisfaction, right?  Our research shows that to accomplish the highest customer satisfaction builders must think outside the box, and I don’t mean the proverbial “creative box,” I mean literally outside the house box!

During an orientation recently with a room full of suppliers and trades for one of our “LeanPlan Workout” implementations, I was interrupted by a woman who clearly did not appreciate my message.

The Lean Enterprise Institute surveys show that 36% of companies attempting lean give up the efforts. Customer Relationship Magazine cites 60% of six sigma programs fail to give desired results.

They say a writer never “makes it” until he gets hate mail. In at least four blog posts this year, I have expressed my frustrations with architects and engineers in this country and those posts have invited a few terse replies, one of which appears below.

A key aspect of quality management is the importance we place on employees, valuing people. We spend a significant amount of time and money officially sending this message to our team, espousing this pillar of quality.

For the last couple of years I've been speaking to groups of remodelers about crafting a social media strategy for their firms and one of the things I always say to do is to create a social media policy for your employees.

The 100 Best Kitchens & Dining Rooms

This new book from Beta-Plus is a nice collection of design ideas, but definitely more of the coffee table variety than for the pro.

Being creative and innovative is something that is widely touted, but how do we actually do it?

Excuse me if you've heard this before ...

In what we can't exactly call a surprise, another government program aimed at helping underwater homeowners is falling well short of it's goal.

Today, a sharp young guy named Ryan wrote to me after seeing a Keynote Presentation I did at the recent BuilderExchange meeting in Las Vegas. Two-hundred fifty people attended from 60 suppliers and a like number of builders.

My Aunt Janice (rest her soul) gave amazing Christmas gifts when I was a kid. One of my favorites was “Hugo the man with a thousand faces.” It was basically a bald plastic head with a case full of disguise equipment. Hugo had mustaches, glasses, eyebrows and wigs galore.

A Risk Management Benchmarking Survey in 2010 showed that 65% of businesses conduct no form of risk analysis prior to making major corporate decisions. While on 42% have any form of risk management audits or procedures.

When you look at your trade contractors, your suppliers, product distributors, what do you see?

Are they a line item, an expense, a necessary evil or are they true partners?

Last fall the president of one of America’s “Top 10” builders who I have known for years corralled me at a conference. Because I travel this industry about as much as anyone, he likes to pump me for intelligence – as I do him. He wondered, what did I see out there? Who was making it? Who wasn’t?

Construction projects are complex in nature and prone to cost and schedule overruns. A significant factor that often contributes to such overruns is rework. 

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