RANDOM THOUGHTS VOLUME #5

TGIM!

Team,

Sometimes my thoughts overflow.  Instead of coordinating them in a nice package and losing all it’s passion (like trying to hold a butterfly) I will just let the thoughts flow.

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‘In the belly, not the back’, All Blacks a New Zealand Rugby team says this as a mantra to stress importance to team culture of genuine and regular feedback amongst teammates.

As in, I’d rather be punched in the gut, then stabbed in the back.  The hardest core value we have is #10. Accountability.  The difference between world class organizations and mediocre ones is often accountability.  The practice of given straight quick feedback directly to a teammate without the concern or recourse of “personal judgement.”  Just punch em in the gut.  Tell em the truth.  Let em get better and don’t sweat it either way.  THEY ARE JUST HELPING YOU AND YOU HELPING THEM.  Better than, well you know we have this issue, I don’t want to say names, but they told me, not to tell you, but you know, well, they are just concerned about somethings that aren’t working like they should.  WHAT A BUNCH OF BULLSHIT.  HIT ME IN THE GUT, TELL ME, LET’S IMPROVE AND MOVE ON!

***

Words are important.

Simple mantras we have are IMPORTANT.

1% better

GSD (get shit done)

Ready. Fire. Aim.

Drink the Koolaid

On or off the bus.

When do you need it by – SOON… TO BE ADDED  FOLLOWED BY… WHERE DO YOU NEED IT???!!!

SUPPLY.  HAPPINESS.

Safety Third.

Love.  Serve.  Care.

Focus.

Core Values.

Bigger isn’t better.  Better is better.

In the weeds.

Organized on your behalf.

NO PROBLEMS.  ONLY SOLUTIONS.

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All just words.  But words speak volumes.   Still don’t believe me… MAKE AMERICA GREAT, BUILD A WALL, DRAIN THE SWAMP.  What were Hillary’s mantras?  I forgot already too!

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Doing 100 little things better 1% provides a gap.  That gap creates champions and moves you away from the competition.

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Find the good.  It is so much easier to find the bad.  Find the good.  Start every meeting with “WHAT’S GOOD” and go around the room.  That’s a game changer.

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TALK is the enemy.  Talk is frivolous and you will talk yourself out of more than you won’t.  Do stuff.  Don’t talk about stuff.

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Why are you afraid of the process?  Why are you afraid of quitting smoking?  Because you will fail along the way?   Because it will be hard?  Because you will be crabby?  Why won’t you get started?  What is holding you back form the process?  Why don’t you call every open quote until you land the job?

***

Pre-flight and post-flight checklist. 

Imagine jumping on a plane and the pilot announces, you know this company doesn’t have time to do a pre-flight or post-flight checklist.  We done this 1000’s of times before, I’m experienced, let’s get this thing in the air!   Sorry, we just don’t have the time!

Yet, DO WE SCHEDULE DELIVERIES, SET UP INSTALLS, TAKE HUGE ORDERS, WITHOUT SEEING THE JOBSITE THE DAY BEFORE OR DAY OF?  WHEN THE JOB IS OVER, DO WE MAKE SURE IT WENT SMOOTH TO FIX MISTAKES FOR THE NEXT ORDER?   Think of all the fires that could be avoided if we TOOK THE TIME to avoid disasters?

PRE-FLIGHT AND POST FLIGHT IS THE KEY!

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Humble.  We must stay HUNGRY AND HUMBLE.  ARROGANCE WILL KILL US.  EVEN THE SNIFF OF IT.  WE SUCK.  WE FAIL OFTEN.  WE CAN AND WILL DO BETTER.  I DON’T ONLY WRITE THAT, I TRULY BELIEVE IN 3 YEARS WE WILL LAUGH HOW MUCH WE SUCKED THIS YEAR.

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BE YOU!  FOR GOODNESS SAKES, THERE IS ONLY ONE YOU.  BE GENUINE.  Think of the coolest people you know, they are more “THEM” then anyone else you know right?  They are probably a little goofy even, BECAUSE THEY AREN’T HIDING THAT!  BE YOU!

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Two things to INSTANTLY IMPROVE:

  1. BE EARLY.
  2. SAY AND DO WHAT YOU SAY YOU ARE GONNA DO!

If you do that, you will be a leader in anything you do!

– Joel Fleischman.  Joel is Head Coach of the solution providers for Drexel Building Supply.  (drexelteam).   You can follow him on twitter:  @JoelmFleischman.   Our mission is to be a supplier of others happiness.  I hope this little post did just that.

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BOOK REVIEWS

TGIM!

What a gem by Chelsea Watzig as she just COMPLETED the book challenge.  Very proud of the Drexel team member she is becoming!

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STARBUCKS EXPERIENCE-

My initial thoughts when reading this book was the similarities between Starbucks and Drexel. From the concept of leaders to having principles, processes and procedures in place; I never knew Starbucks even had such a business model.

 

Within the 5 key concepts that make up their business model, “Make It Your Own” was the one that stood out to me most containing the “5 Ways of Being”. With the Starbucks foundation based upon Be Welcoming, Be Genuine, Be Considerate, Be Knowledgeable and Be Involved; it made me think of our Core Values and the meaning we give them within our culture.

 

“Everything the company does is intended to give the customer a positive, perhaps uplifting, experience while purchasing a quality beverage or food item”. Whether it’s a food and beverage item or building materials, it’s not WHAT you are selling, but the EXPERIENCE you are giving to all customers.

 

RAVING FANS-

This book speaks completely to Drexel. From having a vision in place to always delivering ‘Plus One’, Drexel is always working on improvements and analyzing areas for growth. Our consistency of how we do things, knowing what our clients want and always on a mission to Supply Happiness is what creates our “Raving Fans”.

 

It was interesting how Charlie went to different types of businesses to learn their ways and took home at least one secret of how that particular business was successful. From the food industry to the building industry, it’s all about the customers experience and what your company does to stand out from your competition.

 

SETTING THE TABLE-

The quote that stuck out to me was “It’s not hard to teach anyone the proper way to set a beautiful table. What’s impossible to teach is how to CARE deeply about setting the table beautifully”. This is so true when thinking about it. You really can teach anyone anything, but if they don’t have a passion for what they are doing or why they are doing it, you can’t change that. Relating to Drexel, not only do we hire 10’s, but we have a Team of people who love what they do and live by our core values. Hiring the right people, having high levels of communication and all sharing the same mission, anyone can become excellent at what they do job specific.

 

Once you have the right people working for your business, the number one factor of success will happen on its own; great hospitality. As the book states, “Success is based on meaningful human interaction to retain its soul”. When you have excellent service and amazing hospitality when a customer comes into your business, the price seems to be overlooked. Similar to Raving Fans, in order for you to create Raving Fans you must create a great experience for all customers as well as employees. As long as you always focus on taking care of people (employees, community, friends, suppliers, investors) long-term success will come naturally.

 

BURN YOUR GOALS-

By far my favorite out of all ten books! I see why it is the last one. I read this in four days and could not put it down. It really made me analyze my life and think about the things that I unintentionally focus on or do that is giving me no benefit for my future.

 

The concept of stop preparing and start planning along with burning the unrealistic goals you might be setting for yourself, really stuck with me. Everyone is always so worried about preparing for their future, when that is actually impossibe. You waste all of this time planning for what hasn’t come, when you could be focusing on tomorrow and improving whats in front of you by setting realistic goals for yourself. You never know what the day will bring and what life will throw at you when you wake up, but as long as you focus on the things that matter and are willing to change and grow with any circumstance, that is as prepared as you can be.

 

“Believe that everything that happens to you is in your best interest and an opportunity to learn and grow”. When you believe this along with treating people very well and always having a great attitude, no matter what happens to you, negative or positive, you will come out better than before.

 

“If you want to achieve your greatest potential, you must surround yourself with people who love you deeply, believe in you, encourage you, BUT who are also willing to challenge you to become the best you are capable of being”. Life is all about the connections you have and relationships you have built. You should always set out to enhance relationships as much as possible; showing genuine sincere appreciation, smiling more, listening to others & being the best you can be in every situation- you will live a successful full-filled life.

 

 

 

THESE BOOKS WERE FANTASTIC JOEL- thank you for giving our Team the opportunity to do this book challenge! It’s been a great weekend hobby- to read!

 

Cait- we can chat about my reviews on Monday.

BREAK BREAD

TGIM!

The Last Supper is THE most famous meal ever.  Breaking bread often builds a bond, a unity, a friendship.  As the saying goes, “Everybody has got to eat!”

Here is an inspiring TGIM from probably our most social team member Kari Wik:

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HAPPY MONDAY TEAM!

 

As I travel to the other stores, one of my goals is to meet more of the team and learn more names.  A fun way to get to know the team is over lunch. If you have never done this before, YOU SHOULD! Everyone likes eating good food and enjoying good company.

 

Thank you to everyone I have been lucky enough to have lunch with so far! I have enjoyed the laughs and the stories that were shared.  Some of the conversations were more serious and others were about process improvements.   All were time well spent. Sometimes taking a break and sharing some bread is just what your day or week needs.

 

 

Fun Facts I learned during my lunches:

  • We work HARD.
  • Our yard radios reach local establishments at lunchtime
  • Lots of us pack lunches
  • Many of our team members are trying to eat healthier
  • We have active families!
  • Some of us are getting married and having beautiful babies
  • We are proud of our fellow team members
  • We take great pride in our work!
  • And Frank Gitter won’t go to lunch no matter how many times I ask him. 😉

 

KEY LEARNING: WE HAVE AN AMAZING TEAM!

(But you already knew that, you work here.)

 

#balance

#havefun

tgim

 

(I got to have lunch with these guys! From left to right, Will Cotter, Kari Wik, Hayden Serwe)

KNOW WHAT YOU ARE COMPETING AGAINST

TGIM TEAM!

 

I have now come across two potential clients that purchase stocked Home Depot cabinets as an actual business practice.  They think they’re saving time and money; probably without considering the factors below:

 

1.)  Packaging

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You can imagine that MOST of these things were nicked up BEFORE they even hit the job site.  They won’t get prettier the longer they sit there waiting to get installed.

 

2.)  Low quality Laminate

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Actually shows the details of this full overlay door quite well; almost as well as the dents and scratches…  (sweet finger paint touch up though)

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3.)  No corner gussets or hanging rails + Terrible assembly =

 

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Just Glue, staples, and hope to hold your cabinet together.

 

 

In whatever shape it takes:nate7

 

 

 

 

OH WAIT I FOUND THE SCREWS!!!!!:

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If nothing else, you can now add some value to your Home Depot contractor: TELL THEM TO BE CAREFUL WHEN THROWING THIS CRAP IN THE TRASH

 

 

As shown below, shortsighted thinking is the real obstacle to overcome.  There are at least 31 people out there that need our help.

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Nate Westendorf, Cabinetry Sales & Design Specialist| Drexel Building Supply

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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TO GET WHERE WE WANT TO GO, WE MUST CHANGE WHAT WE DO

**TGI-Valentine’s Day! **

Team,

To get where we want to go in the coming months:

  1. EFFICIENCY = CREATES BALANCE

and

      2. MARGIN GOAL = ADDITIONAL WEEK VACATION

we must change what we do.

We must learn and grow to:

Make each other jobs easier

Help each other to perform at our best.

And change the little stuff.

I can’t wait to see this team improve!

To me our efficiency and margin path is similar to our culture and core value path 7 or 8 years ago.   Culture and core values were in “the arena” but didn’t have center stage with a big spotlight.  We then over the course of years focused on it completely.  Just last week a team from Maine visited us to learn about our nationally known culture.  Now we don’t lose that spotlight, we can’t ever turn that light off, but add a spotlight on margin and efficiencies.  It’s kind of the same path.

Plant the seed, then fertilize and water regularly and grow the root.  The fruit will then come.  Focus on the root.

From The Book, “CHOP WOOD, CARRY WATER” by Joshua Medcalf:

“Little things often look & feel like they make absolutely no difference…like they don’t matter. Until they do.”

 

HUG A LOVED ONE TODAY, TIGHT!   WE ARE NOT PROMISED ANOTHER MOMENT WITH THEM!

— – Joel Fleischman. Joel is Head Coach of the solution providers for Drexel Building Supply. (drexelteam). You can follow him on twitter: @JoelmFleischman. Our mission is to be a supplier of others happiness. I hope this little post did just that.

 

EMPATHY

TGIM!

By Merchant Paul Reis on “what he learned” at Wharton.

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em·pa·thy

noun

the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

 

 

During the week long program I couldn’t stop thinking about Empathy.  It just kept showing up as an important part of the topics we discussed. To me the word Empathy comes off as weak and soft, but the possible outcomes are nothing less than strong and  successful.  It seems having this is critical for work, home, and the social lives we lead.  Start with work.  Having the ability to understand and share our customers feelings, (views, positions, politics) can only lead to Supply. Happiness.  Maybe some Empathy  for our vendor partners could lead to improved performance and programs.  I believe we all  know how important this is to have with our family and Friends.

 

Take time to slow down and put yourself in the other guys shoes.  The sights and outcomes are pretty amazing.

 

Wharton / LMC Advanced Business Acumen

Wharton / LMC Advanced Business Acumen by Steve Thielman

 

As you’ve read Nick’s notes, a lot to absorb.  I’ll be breaking down this information in bites to reinforce the comprehension.  Do not mistake this as a ‘what we did in Philly’ as much as real education for all of us to share/use/discuss.

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The dealers attending spanned from the west coast to the east coast.  Supplying Clint Eastwood’s house, regularly leveling a $4 million dollar home to put up $10 miilion dollar home on Cape Cod, Jewish communities building sukkahs (look it up), supplying $20 million in engineered lumber to one client, 80 LLCs connected to one lumber company, wood gutter actually exists (Boston gutter), growth over 10% considered crazy talk, culture perceived as a case study vs reality, supplying 40 story apartments (1 bedroom $4000.00/month, seriously), timberframed direct ship barn packages with six figure profits,  payment on account with multiple sacks of cash….the stories outside of the classroom provided a lot of perspective to how/where we stand, what to learn from and what to strive for in profitability.

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Thanks to our ownership for the vision of development and the Drexel group for making these educational opportunities possible.

 

 

How the Best Get Better:

 

The pros that say I made mistakes all the time are the best.   Reflect on your SELF, embrace the truths.

 

Cal Ripken:  100 games to correct his swing.  100 times to truly develop a change into natural habit.

 

JFDI:  Ulitmatley nothing happens unless we act upon the decisions to improve.

 

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Finance: 

 

I’m in marketing or delivery, why do I need to know?

 

  1. Knowledge permits participation in resource allocation.  Where do we spend.
  2. Professional welfare tied to financial performance.  What we earn.
  3. Help de-politicize strategic decision making.  Smart spending.

 

ROA:  Return on Assets (2 drivers)

 

  1. Profitability.  How much we earh on each sale.
  2. Efficiency:  How much we earn based on our resources (equipmet, people, processes).

 

Opportunity Cost:  What is it?  Think in terms of quotes and no sales to show for the work.  This is opportunity cost.

 

I’ll leave this installment with a case study discussed.   Ask Nick, Paul or myself what the actual outcome was…answer will also be provided in a future blog.

 

Negotiation Test:

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Roosevelt’s campaign manager produced a pamphlet with a copyrighted photograph on its cover.  3 million copies of the pamphlet had been produced.  It had to be used and there was no time to re-do it.  The cost of using the photograph was $1.00 per pamphlet.  The campaign was short on funds.  The photographer, a man named Moffet, was hard up for money and hard to reason with.  As the campaign manager,  what did you negotiate?