Floor Academy

Floor Academy

Floor Academy's mission is to get the heart and soul of the industry, the installers, to stop playing contractor and to become better business owners. With each episode we explore different parts of operating a business so that yours can become more efficient and effective. The lessons learned come from your peers, competing to succeed in a variety of different markets so you can integrate them into your own.


March 29, 2023 78 min

If you want new blood in this business you are going to have to get dirty and solve the problem starting with yourself. While there are industry organizations working on it, they are not the cureall. 

The Kentucky Floor Covering Education Committee was founded to solve the lack of trained talent in their area. It was not done by one person but by a community that came together. They saw the importance of trained professionals to sol...

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Antiquated, unorganized, and inefficient. Rewarding, lucrative, and life-changing. These are words that come to mind for me when I think about the flooring industry. Upon entering it 7 years ago, I couldn't believe what I found contractors doing and thinking was professional. I couldn't believe that so many people wanted to be their own boss and yet had no idea how to manage a business, money, people, or time. I've c...

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I've seen the same story way more times that I would like to think about posted to the online groups and it goes like this...I've been in the business for "blank" amount of years and it's time for me to move on. I will be selling all of my equipment for "blank" amount money.

It's a sad tale to me. 10, 20, 40 years in business doing a trade and at the end all you have to sell is your depreciati...

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Do you struggle to trust others to complete projects that way you would? I think this is the biggest problem facing most small contracting businesses. No one will do it as good as you, right?

Shawna Bouchard is a Sr. Marketing Specialist for GoBoard at JohnsManville. She is one cog of many in a system that depends on people performing their duties. How do large companies make sure their employees perform to the standards needed and ...

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I'm sure most of us believe Gen Z is lazy. They just want to look at their screens and want everything handed to them on a silver plate. I believe we are looking at it all wrong and they are a product of their environment, which we created. In this talk I discuss what we need to do in order to reach the next generation of flooring professionals and how we can get them engaged and involved.

I apologize for the inabilit...

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Click flooring, housing developments by the thousands, prefinished hardwood, all of these things are turning flooring into a commodity. Is flooring not an artform though? Whether you are doing carpet, tile, stone, hardwood, or floating floors, there is an art to completing the project and making it happen with our available tools.

Lee and Jane Callewaert and Joshua Nordstrom are leaders in the tile artisan movement. They are doing b...

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If you want your community to support you and your business, then you need to support your community with the funds they pay for your services. It will create a cyclical system in which you will both always look out for each other. If you missed the talk at Surfaces or just weren't able to make it to the show, here is your chance to hear the message.

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February 22, 2023 87 min

Markup and margin, they're the same thing, right? Both of them get you to a higher price that is passed on to the client but what do each of them really mean, what should we be operating on, what's a healthy percentage to be at, and how do we even figure out where we need to be?

Michael K Mcclanahan is no stranger to running a profitable business and none of that would have been possible without an understanding of markups...

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February 15, 2023 83 min

Navigating the employer employee relationship can be tough. I believe we often want our employees to succeed more than they want to succeed themselves. With those wishes we often times put ourselves in a bad position by advancing pay, allowing absences, or just going above and beyond for them when we know there will be no thanks or return on the investment.

John Steier is the owner of Steier Flooring in Algona, Iowa, a certified flo...

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February 8, 2023 94 min

More money, more problems. You hear it all the time. Everyone talks about wanting to scale their business up but what happens when you don't feel like dealing with more issues and scale the business down.

Ron Teljeur, the owner of of Acorn Wood Floors just outside of Vancouver, once built it up to six crews using subcontractors. Between managing it all, putting out fires, and never touching the tools, he decided to scale it dow...

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What is the purpose of your website? Is it an online place holder? A photo gallery? Does it help make you look legit? Should it be producing phone calls, appointments or sales?

Daniel Moscovitch is the owner of Flooring Pros Marketing an online marketing company that specializes in web design and search engine optimization to make sure you phone is ringing. If you ask Daniel, he will tell you that if your website isn't selling,...

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After my discussion with Todd Saunders regarding the Floorcon event, Jerry Levinson reached out and asked if he could play 20 questions with me. I was more than happy to oblige and the following is that discussion.

Jerry is a business coach and consultant, former retail store owner and also owned a blinds business previously as well. His knack for marketing has helped him succeed in all his ventures. 

Take a listen as we go back and ...

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January 18, 2023 79 min

Foam versus Mud, tar versus roll on moisture mitigation, hand sewing versus hot iron seams and tape, there are lot of traditions in the flooring and tile & stone industries that are dying. 

Mario TileGuy Garcia is one man that is making sure the tradition of mud stays alive. Through the annual MUD EVENT attendees learn how to not only mud a shower pan or a wall but the culture and traditions behind the techniques. It's a gr...

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January 11, 2023 77 min

What's it like to go from employee to owner of the business you were working for? Will the other employees respect you? What parts are overwhelming? How different of a skillset do you need?

Returning guest and friend of the show, Josh Hansman, found himself with a proposition from his former boss he couldn't refuse. After Josh's last appearance where he talked about what he thinks make a great employee and a previous ...

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Finding employees is tough but what if there was someone that could provide them without you having to search? Paying new hires can be a very unprofitable venture but what if there was a way to have someone else pay them well you trained them? Buying tools for a new person adds up very quickly but what if you could get those tools paid for by someone else?

All of this sounds too good to be true but it isn't. The federal governm...

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December 28, 2022 62 min

Is there a flooring mafia? WIll there be a new flooring mafia? Is big tech going to take over the flooring industry?

Attending FloorCon 2022 put on by Broadlume was an interesting experience as a flooring installer. As a conference made for flooring retailers I was a bit out of place. I heard some things that made me wonder what people are really trying to accomplish. I reached out to Todd Saunders, the CEO of Broadlume, ...

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They're lazy. They don't want to work. They are on their phones all the time. 

I've heard a lot of nasty talk about late millennials, Gen Z and Gen Alpha. It's nothing that wasn't said about any generation before them. They also are not lazy, they are a product of their environment. Listen in as Nick Hofmann, owner of Pokuna Tile, and I discuss how a recent career day went for his kindergartener son, what we...

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December 14, 2022 61 min

Online flooring sales are a growing space for the industry. What would it entail to be able to sell online? Who would your market be? Is it worth it to go national or could you manage just a local online business? How would the clients get the flooring? 

WIth 25 years experience in global sales, marketing and branding, Bob Baldocchi knows his stuff. During his 15 years at Emser Tile he was the chief marketing officer and helped buil...

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Are industry events necessary to attend? What do you gain by going to them? Are they really just for retailers?

The International Surface Event is returning to Las Vegas January 31st to February 2nd 2023. Listen in to Paul Treanor, the senior manager of content and community, and myself to find out what's happening at the show and why you need to attend.

Don't forget to use the code KYLE when registering for Surfa...

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November 30, 2022 76 min

Do you ever get asked if your products are green? How will they affect the home environment? Do they have VOC's or do they have phthalates?

Graham Capobianco is 5th generation flooring professional and the Sustainability Manager for North America at Novalis Innovative Flooring. His role includes not only knowing how products impact the environment but also helping contractors work through the paperwork for LEED certi...

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