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.

Episodes

July 20, 2021 87 min

This weeks guest is Jim Aaron. Jim has been a territory manager for William M. Bird and Mohawk before moving in to positions with the parent company of Carpet One. When the director position at the Floor Covering Education Foundation became available he wasn’t initially excited about it. After some wise counsel he was made aware of the what the position could actually accomplish. Listen in as we talk about what the FCEF’s goal is, ...

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This weeks guest is Brendan Hunt. Brendan lives in New South Wales, Australia and owns My Timber, a flooring store. With beginnings as a carpenter, to business owner with a crew of 15 he has had a journey that has taken him up and down mountains. When the carpentry business went south, he hopped into the corporate world and climbed that ladder. Noticing he was missing out on his kids life, he found a business to purchase but this t...

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This weeks guest is Josh Funkhouser. Josh is a partner at Davidson and Funkhouser a law firm in Scottsdale, AZ. He specializes in business and real estate law. We look at the why’s and how’s of getting your business going the right way from the start, as well as, how some items may be ever evolving. This is a conversation you won’t want to miss. Stay tuned.

Davidson and Funkhouser

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This weeks guest is Mike Somodean. Mike owns and operates MSCS, Inc. in the northern suburbs of Atlanta, GA. Starting flooring in 2003 and getting serious about it in 2016 he has come a long way but he isn’t done yet. We get to discussing why your business needs systems. From figuring out your true expenses, to training, to setting goals. Without the systems you are choosing to fail. Listen in to learn how to succeed.

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June 24, 2021 14 min

As I wandered around the show floor at Surfaces 2021 I asked people what their best minute or two of business advice was. Listen to some very successful installers and business owners get your pointed in the right direction.

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This weeks guest is Katie Marcotte. Katie owns and operates Maine Modern Tile with her partner Eric in Otisfield, ME. Growing up she was encouraged to be what she wanted to be. This included learning trades from close relatives as well as having a feminine side as well. Of course being well rounded in some areas doesn’t mean we don’t have struggles elsewhere. Listen in as Katie and I talk about her struggles in school, addiction, a...

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This weeks guest is Eduardo Martinez. Eduardo owns and operates Martinez Commercial Flooring Services out of Fort Worth, TX. Growing up Eduardo learned the trade from his father. Eventually he went out to start his own thing and has grown it from working locally to traveling the country to keep his ever growing crew busy. Listen in as we talk about how a business is as unique as the individual that runs it and how that helps separa...

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June 8, 2021 71 min

This weeks guest is Jean Gilman. Gil owns and operates US Fiberglass and Gelcoat in Chester, MD. This has been his way to bootstrap World Proof Products which is a flooring manufacturer. Gil and I spend our time talking about team building and finding the right connections. Listen in to learn why your question should be who not how.

World Proof Products

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This weeks guest is Jason McDaniel. Jason owns and operates Stoneman Construction as well as being the cofounder of the Global Tile Posse group on Facebook. Getting his start with countertops he took a job on a whim to set some floor tile from a general contractor. This led to man more jobs that focused on an all tile business. It wasn’t always to spec though. Listen in as Jason and I discuss communication issues via text based soc...

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This weeks guest is Jon Namba. Jon is the owner of Namba Services, in Taylorsville, UT. He is also the the Editorial Director for Floor Covering Installer Magazine. From positions with the NWFA to CFI to CTEF, he has been a busy many making many connections. Last time Jon and I talked about investing in yourself. This time we discuss all of the options to invest in yourself. We go over a basic description of the current certificati...

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This weeks guest is your friend and mine, Ken Ballin. Ken owns and operates Skyro Floors on the Jersey Shore and no he doesn’t hang out with MTV reality show stars. We get to talking about what the industry has termed the “Installation Crisis”. How can it be fixed and what do we believe the solution is. Listen in to know what you can bring to the table and why you are so powerful.

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This weeks guest is Phillip Gladden. Phillip is a second generation installer. As soon as he could walk he was on job sites with his dad. After over 20 years of installing he was able to take a job with Crain as the Eastern Sales representative. Phil and i discuss investing properly in your tools and why the cost of some tools doesn’t need to scare you or seem that far out there.

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May 4, 2021 76 min

This week's guest is Wayne Lee. Wayne currently works for Middle Tennessee Lumber in sales and training. He previously worked at American Sanders and ran his own sand and finish business. One major thing has always made a difference in how Wayne has been successful has been the technical knowledge. Whether understanding the machine, the sandpaper, or how the wood reacts to the environment. Listen in to hear Wayne Lee just think...

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This weeks guest is Jake schlichte. Jake owns and operates North Country Hardwoods in Auburn, NH. With a grandfather that ran a store and a dad that did hardwood floors, Jake wasn’t lacking in the experience department from the get go. What has made the difference in his career so far? Being a risk taker. Find out why he says you have get comfortable being uncomfortable.

North Country  Hardwoods

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This weeks guest is Nathan Hyden. Nathan is getting ready to launch A Step Above Flooring in Lexington, Kentucky. We spend our time discussing what it takes to run a successful business, how to manage a partnership, and why confidence will take you way further than you know.

Hyden's Hardwoods

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This weeks guests are Jose and Daniel Gonzalez. These two brothers run Preferred Flooring in Grand Rapids, Michigan. For years they ran their business with paying their workers via a 1099. In 2015 after some advice from a larger company they subbed from all of their employees were moved to getting W-2s and being on payroll. This switch came with some huge considerations. Daniel and Jose took pay cuts, labor for projects had an incr...

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April 6, 2021 72 min

This weeks guest is Mario Fernandez. Mario owns and operates Fernandez Floor Covering in Corona, CA. Starting at a young and tender age with his father he helped install VCT flooring in military housing. At 18 he went full time with his dad and eventually went out on his own. After running his own and having a shop and then losing everything during the great recession, he has built it back up by being only a labor shop. Find out wh...

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March 30, 2021 79 min

This weeks guest is Mark Herakovic. Mark is from West Farmington, OH and just recently became the operations manager for MDG Flooring. Throughout Mark’s career he has been an employee, self employed, and now management. We sit down to discuss the topic of work life balance.Are we the two guys to tackle this topic, probably not but listen as we openly discuss some shortcomings and how we and you can better manage your business and t...

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March 23, 2021 69 min

This weeks guest is Stephen Wood. Stephen owns and operates Great Alaskan Flooring Company on Kodiak Island in Alaska. After getting his start at the age 16 in Mississippi, Steven ended up in Alaska at private school. By 19 he had earned his GED and opened up his own showroom. He was being taught by the installers he employed as he worked alongside them on the projects he had sold. Listen in as we discuss he journey in the industry...

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This weeks guest is Marcos Guerequeta. Marcos owns and operates Local Flooring Group in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. He has taken the traditional method of owning a flooring store and flipped it on its head. After being able to carry some major brands when he first opened some of the good old boys club complained to their reps about him having product too. When he could no longer sell those products he flipped the script and de...

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