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Painting Pro Times, the source for paint professionals!

Have you heard about the happy, rich paint professional? This individual is a top craftsman that has grown annual revenue by keeping clients for years. Referrals are plentiful; now it is a choice of accepting the best projects, rather than bidding and more bidding. Vendors and competitors alike know and respect the operation. Employees are capable to perform high end techniques, while the next generation of crew members elbow one another for a chance to get into the company’s training system.

Does this setting describe where you go in the morning? Or is it an unreachable, pastel dream? In order to even work toward making the playoffs, owners/management must have a clear vision of what a champion paint and coating business looks like. Associates must be willfully engaged on the path to company wide success. Team culture prevails over old-boy, family and other dysfunctional side deals. The directions need measurable plateaus or levels of accomplishment that are recognizable and when achieved, celebrated as with any Super Bowl run. If you agree that great companies are built with good people, what place are you in?

Rather than have a few distracted fans endure a bottom dwelling team, rise and elevate to a contender with an enormous cheering section. Assuming you are ready and willing, what is the key ingredient that builds successful paint and coating application companies…the best equipment, the biggest projects, an aggressive sales force, a top office organization, or an owner willing to push night and day? Here is a hint: the answer has one word.

Maybe some of the academic PhD readers will scratch their beards trying to figure what is the best approach to professional painting success? Insiders who grew up in the application field may think the answer involves years of grinding out work equals a solid business existence. Perhaps, every small business has pushes and pulls that may be considered somewhat grating. The answer boils down to leadership. Not the default, “I’m the boss…”, or “I pay the bills so…”, but it starts with the person that is excited and loves the application industry.

Leadership is effective, focused, empathetic, inclusive and dynamic. Leaders propel themselves and their team to achieve and just as importantly to maintain success. Leadership centers on developing a vision and sharing it so associates, customers and vendors see and believe in the company’s mutual journey. Leaders continuously learn and improve. Like paint and coating application, the process is challenging and fun. And all the while, it is a balance of art and science! Indeed, effective leadership makes the trip so much fun everyone enjoys playing a role and encouraging one another.

We have an article that may help professionals consider the importance of leadership titled Stop Selling. Let’s agree that just about all people and businesses have room for improvement. The big differentiators are strategy (the vision and plan), implementation (step by step directions) the insatiable thirst for team achievement (getting it done). The time for change is now; start reading and get going.

Not quite as exciting, but every bit as important as the leadership article, we have a Regulatory Review piece: OSHA Construction Standards. It is an excellent resource loaded with links. A few of the hazards may not be very dominate in paint and coating application, while others like Fall, Hazard Communication, Ladder Safety, and Confined Space are common. Also, the bulletin reviews who has responsibility when subcontracting from another contractor or general contractor/owner.

The next read is actually part one of two:  Website 101, which provides some basic, relevant information regarding starting or upgrading your web presence. It is followed by Website Cost & Options for Small Businesses. Together, the articles share some tips and may prompt you into the waters of the web or even to go a little deeper.

If you go to AkzoNobel’s youtube page, it is filled with sailing the ocean videos. In a complementary way, the company is involved with a project they labeled: The Largest Clean-up in History. By any measure the undertaking covers about two thirds of planet. It is as worthy as it is big. Incidentally, if there is a question whether the company name is one or two words, check out their homepage. It is mostly depicted as one word, like in the logo.

In other News, Graco has unveiled a new electric fireproofing sprayer. The machine is has been designed to be smaller, lighter and more maneuverable. Reportedly, the ToughTek F800e sprays up to 40 bags per hour. “Graco developed the F800e by listening to the needs of contractors from all over the country,” said Bryce Gapinski, Graco’s ToughTek Product Manager.

Sherwin-Williams announced the launch of a Loxon Self-Cleaning Acrylic Coating. Steve Revnew, senior vice president of product innovation stated, “Sherwin-Williams developed Loxon Self-Cleaning Acrylic Coating to help contractors and property managers avoid costly repaints and extensive cleaning, resulting in improved efficiencies and high satisfaction levels.” SW designed the new product for stucco, masonry and cement board, as well as bare or previously coated concrete (as with any product, read the data sheets for details/limitations).

Apparently, from continuous prompting by the National Association of House Builders (NAHB), the EPA has finally clarified procedures for emergency work under the Renovation, Repair, and Painting (RRP) Rule. Well, it has been out eight years… mighty nice of the oversized, bloated federal bureaucracy to somewhat lighten the load of the beleaguered, unpopular directive.

Do you sometimes think over time science fiction becomes reality? Well, Harry Potter fans stand and cheer, the University of California, Irvine nerds invented an invisibility cloak. Here at PPT, we asked for some samples for an experiment with a blender and spray rig, but the itchy beards politely declined. They are probably working on that paint can already.

In the US, how many segments are coatings divided into? What is the gross revenue of each sector? Find the answers in the News item: Types of Coatings & US Market Revenue by Segment.

Do not get too busy to develop a vision. Make it so you can see and share every detail in brilliant color. Train track by track get rolling on the leadership journey.

Thanks for reading Painting Pro Times!

Please send comments and corrections to MarkCasale@paintspecialists1.com.

Mark Casale, Editor