Hastings’ Integrity Products Consultant Ben Brockett shares his thoughts on the importance of the Marvin Remodelers Summit – an annual event in Warroad, MN at the Marvin factory that gives remodeling contractors the opportunity to step back and focus on the growth of their business.
I am guessing that many of us who have been to Warroad before might wonder what is so special about the Remodelers Summit. After all, isn’t this just “another” builder trip to Warroad? I never understood the context of this event (notice I didn’t call it a trip) until I had the chance to host it for the first time 5 or so years ago.
In the best terms that I can come up with for it, this is a business meeting/networking opportunity for remodeling contractors from all over the country. Yes, we sit in the different product rooms and learn about what makes Marvin and Integrity products special and we take a short plant tour but the great value I see in this event comes from not what is planned, but rather the relationships that are facilitated. I will try and explain.
The Remodelers Summit gives independent remodeling contractors the opportunity to step away from their “regular routine” for a few days and reflect upon their own business. The primary message is not about Warroad and Marvin/Integrity Windows and Doors. Attendees are led through a series of discussions by Shawn McCadden, a published industry expert, about what it means to be a remodeling contractor today. Shawn started into the remodeling business as a laborer for the remodeling company that his father owned. He then branched out into owning his own business which he then sold, and has now become a trusted advisor and business coach for many remodeling companies across the country. To learn more about Shawn please visit this link to his website. http://www.shawnmccadden.com/
To me “self discovery” is a good term for what Shawn is able to bring about as he presents and asks questions during a series of discussions. These discussions have names such as “Remodeling your Company to Last – Today and Into the Future”, “Seven Keys to Differentiation for Remodeling Companies” and “Growing Your Business – What is the Next Step?”
One of my favorite segments is titled “Show me the Money – Where did all the Money Go?” During this segment Shawn challenges the group to think about how much money they really need to cover expenses and turn a profit – the capital that will allow them to grow their business. For most remodeling contractors this exercise is “sobering” as many discover that they perhaps didn’t have a good of a grasp on the financial side of their business as they felt they did. He also challenges them to use products of better quality, pointing out that while that may also cost more, the profit dollars on using these products is greater with the same amount of labor needed to install them. “Eye opening” is the phrase that was heard used by many.
The networking portion of this event is equally important. By the end of the first day you will see contractors from Connecticut exchanging business cards and contact information with those from Maine and vice versa. People who 12 hours ago met for the first time, playing pool together or sharing a story. If you think about it, Warroad becomes the conduit for this all to occur. I can’t tell you how many times I have heard people say, “I feel very lucky to have been chosen to attend this” or “Wow, I have a renewed sense of direction after today.” Just in the first few days I received emails from our guests this year and wanted to share one with you.
Just wanted to express my thanks to you and the rest of the crew at A.W. Hastings for the chance to attend the Remodelers Summit in Warroad. I have attended several similar seminars but the ability for the contractors to network and share views on new products building practices and experiences set this one far apart from the rest. As a builder/contractor/business owner the summit gave me a substantial investment in the future of our company and I walked away knowing our company is stronger because of it.
After listening to Shawn’s presentation I was able to see a new direction my business plan needed to take. I believe most of the contractors that attended the summit are much like me, we have become business owners not necessarily by choice but the natural progression has brought us to it. Shawn gave us a “tool box” full of essential information to make it to the next level and operate more professionally. It was an eye opening experience and he deserves high praise.
I was also able to see first hand the pride Marvin puts not only in its products but also the pride it has in the community of Warroad. The Marvin product line is always expanding and it has continued to be a company I enjoy buying products from. The fact they are willing to bring us to tour their facility and organize this type of Summit makes me believe they care, not only about their products but how they are represented by us, the contractor. I came away feeling even more confident that if I were to sell a Marvin product to my customer it was the right choice.
Again, many thanks to you, John and Chris for a great experience!
Broadcove Builders – Maine
I hope that in the future when you hear me speak about the Remodelers Summit with deep conviction, this will help you to understand why I believe so strongly in it and the value it has for the remodeling contractor.
Thanks to entire Hastings sales team for finding a quality group of attendees and to Hastings’ John Morey, Chris Eldredge and Mary Paquette for your roles in making this year the best Remodelers Summit I have ever attended.