NARI NewsWatch
Mar. 26, 2014

OSHA announces national stand-down for fall prevention in construction
Occupational Safety and Health Administration
The U.S. Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration recently announced a national safety stand-down from June 2-6, to raise awareness among employers and workers about the hazards of falls, which account for the highest number of deaths in the construction industry. “Falls account for more than a third of all deaths in this industry,” said Dr. David Michaels, assistant secretary of labor for occupational safety and health. “We’re working with employers, workers, industry groups, state OSH plans and civic and faith-based organizations to host safety stand-downs that focus on recognizing hazards and preventing falls. We are getting the message out to America’s employers that safety pays and falls cost.”More

Are you ready for when you want to retire?
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
You’ve built your business to be successful — with you at the helm. But what will happen to that business when you decide to make a life’s change? Putting systems in place now ensures a smooth transition later, whether it’s an internal staffing change or a business sale.More

Tune in March 29, for National CotY Award announcement
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
Two hundred and thirty-five people have already registered that they’ll be watching online — make sure you’re one of them. Watch the webcast this Friday, March 28, at 6 p.m. CT (or 5:30 p.m., if you’d like to see the before and after photos of all the Regional winners), and join NARI members onsite via the online Twitter feed, using #EofE2014. Register to let us know you’ll be joining us online and visit www.nari.org/eveningofexcellence Friday night.More

Make the most of your NARI member benefits
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
Whether a new member or a long-time member, it’s often hard to realize the array of benefits that are part of your NARI membership. This quarterly webinar provides you an overview of NARI’s benefits, broken down into six buckets—marketing, education, advocacy, research, recognition programs and business tools — so you can easily access the items most important to you and your company. The next quarterly Member Benefits webinar will take place Wednesday, April 16, at 12 p.m. CT. Find out more and register here.More

GuildQuality offers members 50 free surveys
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
NARI members receive 50 free consumer surveys from GuildQuality, which captures candid customer feedback on your behalf. Their process provides your customers with an easy way to share areas of concern, as well as areas in which your company excels. Responses are delivered to you instantly, enabling you to correct issues fast, or identify referral opportunities and promote customer testimonials online. To get started using GuildQuality, visit www.guildquality.com, and let them know you’re a NARI member.More

Mark your calendars for upcoming certification prep courses
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
If you’ve been on the fence about pursing a NARI certification, now’s the time to act to prepare for the August and September testing dates. High-Performance Remodeling, the prep course for the Green Certified Professional exam, starts June 4. The Certified Remodeling Project Manager (CRPM) prep course begins June 25, and the Universal Design Certified Professional (UDCP) prep course starts July 8. You can sign up for these courses on the NARI certification page.More

Learn about high-performance remodeling at NARI University in April
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
The April Straight from the Certifications webinar will take place at noon CT on Thursday, April 17. These webinars take key topics from our certification study groups and deliver it for those who want to make their business more efficient and profitable — but don’t have the time to invest in the full certification prep process. The topic covered in April is “High-performance remodeling packages that sell themselves,” with James Lebair, GCP, UDCP. This webinar costs $49. View all of the year’s NARI University courses and register on NARI’s website.More

North Bay's April meeting focuses on insurance
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
April 1, North Bay NARI will present “Don’t be an April fool: Get your insurance coverage right,” from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. The meeting will focus on how to avoid common general liability gaps and pitfalls. Register by March 27, and receive a $5 discount off the member price of $45 and the non-member price of $55. Find our more information and register on the chapter’s website.More

NARI of Silicon Valley tells you how to Houzz
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
NARI of Silicon Valley will host a lunch ‘N learn Wednesday, April 2, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Bring your laptop and project photos for this hands-on learning experience of setting up your Houzz Home Improvement Pro Account. This free event will be held at the Sonoma Chicken Coop — lunch is on your own. Find out more information and register on the chapter’s website.More

Eastern Massachusetts NARI: Use your memberships to advance your career
National Association of the Remodeling Industry
Eastern Massachusetts NARI’s Wednesday, April 2, meeting will be on using your membership in associations to advance your career. Paul Hutchinson, owner of Hutchinson Consulting, will discuss how to set your goals for participation, maximize your time and showcase your skills. The meeting will take place from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. Cost to attend for members is $55. Non-members are $95. Find out more information and register on the chapter’s website.More

Honesty is the best policy, but not for the reasons you think
Small Business Trends
We all know the damage done when being less than honest with our clients, customers and partners. But the cost of lying in business can be much more than we think. In a conversation with an investor she calls “Peter,” Tech Entrepreneur Rebekah Campbell says she learned the damage lying does to businesses in general.More

How to stand out in your next meeting
By Deborah Wipf
Communication isn't just what we say. It’s how we say something — our tone of voice and our nonverbal cues, including facial expressions and body language. Sometimes our nonverbal cues can betray our intended message. One example that sticks out to me involves our beloved cellphones. Let's face it; we're addicted to those things. Don't believe me? If you've ever experienced that moment of panic when you couldn't locate your phone, you're addicted. Cellphones are great, and they're intended to facilitate better and faster communication, but sometimes we misuse the tool. More

Who needs banks? PayPal and Lending Club want to make small business loans
Bloomberg Businessweek
Lots of companies have tried to use technology to improve small business lending with data, collecting information about merchants from their social media profiles, online accounting software and reviews to help lenders decide whether to make loans. Alternative companies such as OnDeck and Kabbage have succeeded at increasing loan volumes and speeding approval times. But their loans usually cost more than bank loans or credit cards — sometimes much more. More

Creating a productive workplace as a small business
Small Business
Creating a productive workplace is central to the success of businesses, but it’s not always the number one concern of executives. In a world where every penny needs to be accounted for in black and white, concepts such as employee satisfaction and happiness can be seen as secondary to turnover, revenue and profit. However, productivity has a direct impact on the bottom line.More

The new rules of Facebook marketing
Investment News
Marketing your business on Facebook used to be simple. All you had to do to promote your services was create a page, then find people to “like” your page. Upon doing so, they would begin seeing your company posts in their Facebook newsfeed. If your fans liked your content, they could like, comment or share it and it would be seen by their network. Marketers loved it and Facebook took note. More

Back to marketing basics
Napa Valley Register
Looking to develop a successful marketing plan for your small business? Between Internet advertising, mobile applications, social media and email marketing, you can become overwhelmed by the choices. Begin by asking yourself one question: what will work for my business? To answer this question, it’s time to go back to marketing basics and the development of your marketing plan. More

Build social media into your marketing
Citizen-Times
A 2012 survey of small-business owners by the online networking and promotional service Manta.com found that 90 percent are actively engaged in social networking sites, while 74 percent perceive social networking as valuable, if not more so, than networking in-person. What’s more, nearly half of the respondents said gaining and targeting prospective customers is the most valuable benefit of networking online. And 78 percent reported gaining at least a quarter of their new customers through online or social media channels that year.More

Big marketing ideas for small businesses
The Charlotte Post
From the mom and pop coffee shop to the small bookstore just down the street, people enjoy the personal interactions and convenience small businesses offer. However, small business success requires a strategic balance between face-to-face interactions and the convenience of consumer-focused technology. A recent Web.com survey about interactions between consumers and small businesses found that more than 8 out of 10 consumers said it's important that a small business is customer-focused and provides personal, face-to-face interaction with its customers.More

What's handicapping US first-time homebuyers?
The Economic Voice
For months and months now The Economic Voice has been pointing to seemingly obvious economic data to prove that the U.S. housing market is in trouble because of the weak U.S. economy. Those in the “know” — economists and the real estate board — have been waxing eloquence on how the weather is the main culprit behind the disappointing U.S. housing market numbers.More

US construction spending on the up
World Cement
The latest figures from the U.S. Census Bureau reveal that seasonally adjusted total construction spending in the US increased by 9.3 percent from $863.1 billion in January 2013, to $943.1 billion in January 2014. Spending also saw a marginal increase of 0.1 percent compared to $941.9 billion in December 2013. The U.S. Census Bureau survey covers construction work done each month on new structures or improvements to existing structures for private and public sectors. More

Accepting credit cards? PCI compliance a concern for small businesses
FOX Small Business
Recent breaches against major retailers have put payment card industry (PCI) regulations in the spotlight. However, it isn't only big companies that need to worry about adhering to these regulations. The rules apply to every business that relies on credit and debit cards for transactions. Even if your business employs four people and it conducts one credit-card transaction a month, it must be PCI compliant. More

Even in slow-changing industries, small businesses need to embrace technology
ZDNet
Small business owners often lament that they're limited in what they can do to grow their business simply because they are a small business. Perhaps this kind of thinking is the actual limitation. One small business that is certainly challenging convention and embracing technology is St. Kilda Boats Sales and Service. Dealer principal of St Kilda Boat Sales and Service, Darren Finkelstein, has been incorporating technology into his business for the past 12 years and it has reaped extraordinary results.More

Small businesses opt for technology over people
Gaebler
Technology and labor are some of the most important investments a small business can make. But they can also be the most costly. So, when push comes to shove, where do entrepreneurs prefer to spend their money: on new technology or on additional staff hires? According to the latest Brother Small Business Survey, it's not a very difficult decision for today's small business owners, with nearly three out of four owners indicating that they would rather allocate budget spend to technology than people.More