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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.
 
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show series
 
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 pos…
 
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. Not…
 
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. St…
 
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 t…
 
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. Need new headphones for working and listening to Floor Academy? Check out ISOTunes using the link below. Amazing Bluetooth he…
 
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…
 
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…
 
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 Pro…
 
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 …
 
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 opt…
 
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 t…
 
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…
 
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, …
 
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 comfortab…
 
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 Need new headphones for working and listening to Floor A…
 
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 so…
 
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…
 
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 open…
 
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…
 
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 …
 
This weeks guest is Karen Gross. Karen owns and operates MBD Flooring Services, which does inspections, concrete testing, and consultation services. Growing up Karen was always around flooring while hanging out with her dad. In 2012 he passed away and she stepped up to take over the company. She has invested in learning as much as possible and part…
 
This weeks guest is Martin Brookes. Martin owns and operates Heritage Marble and Tile as well as being the current president of the National Tile Contractors Association. After growing up in the UK and doing an apprenticeship for masonry, Martin moved to the U.S. He started in the commercial world doing large box stores and was quickly running the …
 
This weeks guest is Shannon Huffstickler. Shannon previously The Tile Girl and now The Schluter Girl has run her own tiling business and is now the Social Media Community Liaison for Schluter Systems. We discuss the importance of communities. Whether you are participating nationally, internationally, or locally it can have an effect on you as an in…
 
This weeks guest is Tim Brown. Tim owns Hook Agency which focuses on web design and SEO. After spending time developing leads for businesses under another business he went out on his own and like most of us learned that being a business owner is tough. Join us as Tim gives us some free insights into how we can improve our web marketing and websites…
 
This weeks guest is Carl “The Flash” Leonard. Carl owns and operates Cutting Edge Tile in NJ. A part of the “Jersey Crew” that was the first CTI class to have everyone pass, his standards weren’t always that high. We spend our time discussing head trash, charging appropriately, firing clients, and just focusing on being a businessman first and a cr…
 
This weeks guest is Liz Calandrino. Liz is a writer for Floor Covering News as well as a business coach and consultant. After conversation we had on the phone, I knew I had to have her back on the podcast. We discuss gender roles in the industry and how they can affect sales. Stay tuned for a lot of great stories with amazing insights. https://www.…
 
This weeks guest is Seth Folkerson. Seth own SNF Floors in Plant City, Florida. Not being super interested in school Seth dropped out and got his GED while learning different trades. He finally settled into flooring with his now father in law before moving on to a second company to receive more training. Now out on his own and trying to build a bra…
 
This weeks guest is Derek Swegel. Derek owns Habit Hardwood Floors in Panama City Beach, Florida. After years of working with his brother in Kansas City, Derek and his wife decided they were ready for a change and headed to Florida. Is running a business stressful, depressing, difficult, rewarding, exciting, and many other things, yes, yes it is. D…
 
This weeks guest is Ken Ballin. Ken owns and operates Skyro Floors in West Creek, NJ. If there is a topic that is discussed to death online, it is estimates. So, Ken and I decided to tackle this subject and weigh in on different options of how to get to your bottom line number. Should it be itemized, a total sum only, detailed? Listen in to find ou…
 
This weeks guest is Andy McWilliams. Andy is currently the technical rep for Novalis Floors International but was formerly an installer for many years. Managing a business is hard enough but when you throw employees into the mix it can really screw it up. Andy and I talk about how to hire and train apprentices for this trade. Listen in to find out …
 
This weeks guest is Sonny Callaham. Sonny started his flooring career in 1990 as an apprentice to a carpet installer. After a few transitions within the industry he found his calling on the adhesives side. Now the owner of Divergent Adhesives, he is also the co founder and Chairman of the board for the National Association of Floor Covering Technic…
 
This weeks guest is Sprigg Lynn. Sprigg owns and operates Universal Floors in Washington DC. Started by his father in 1953 it has had as many as 150 employees. Currently they are running around 40 employees and maintain the business through having great systems to keep everything in check. Listen in as we talk about why systems will make a differen…
 
This weeks guest Claire Karakey. Claire is a licensed professional counselor and owner of Claiborn Counseling. While receiving therapy as a child she realized how much of a gift it was and decided at 12 years old that she wanted to be able to help people in the same way. We spend our time discussing how can identify depression and addiction problem…
 
This weeks guests are Jamen and Chanel Carrizosa. Jamen and Chanel own and operate Icon Tile and Design in Seattle, WA. With over 20 years experience they focus on high end custom homes and spec houses. This has led to having a way of conducting themselves on the job site that makes them the consummate professional. We spend our time discussing how…
 
This weeks guest is Lorie Davidson. Lorie owns and operates Davidson Wood Flooring in Atlanta, GA. Starting out at 15 as a way to help his mom and going full time at 17, Lorie has gained 30 years of experience in the hardwood floor industry. It wasn’t until he got involved with classes and the online community that he saw his career really start to…
 
This weeks guest is Ansel Hall. Ansel is a business broker with Sunbelt Business Brokers in Phoenix. After a career in finance handling multimillion dollar mergers and acquisitions, he hung it up to start his own business. After selling his first business venture, Ansel bought into a car dealership and helped make it successful. Wanting to return t…
 
This weeks guest is Sergey Shlyapintokh. Sergey is the Director of Business Development at Thermosoft, a manufacturer of radiant heat systems. We discuss how radiant heat isn’t something to be afraid of, how it can add great value to your bottom line, and why building relationships outside of your direct industry can be beneficial. Need new headpho…
 
This weeks guest is Mr. Karma himself, Ken Ballin. If you don’t know who Ken is, he runs Skyro Floors on the Jersey Shore, as well as being a huge online presence and resource for anyone willing to reach out. Listen in as we discuss how what you put out into the world can help you build your business, why you don’t need to get angry about a guy ask…
 
This weeks guest is Christopher Bock. Chris is part owner of Geronimo Floors in Marin County California. With 20 years of experience a recent mind shift has made him much more interested in building systems and owning a business instead of job. Listen in as we discuss some of the issues holding him back. Facebook Instagram Need new headphones for w…
 
This weeks guest is Schannon Violet. Schannon owns and operates That Tile Chick. After 4 years of schooling to be an accountant and 6 years being one, she said “this isn’t for me” and hung it up. She moved to Houston and started a home remodeling company with her partner. Listen in to find out how her accounting background has helped her grow her b…
 
This weeks guest is Dave Garden. Dave owns and operates Installation Services, LLC. in Detroit, MI. Starting out as a lone installer and now running a workroom that does installations for Lowes, Dave has come a long way. What has made the difference in being able to go from himself to roughly 200 crews? Setting the standard before ever arriving and…
 
This weeks guest is Matt Garcia. Matt owns and operates Craftsman Hardwood Flooring in San Angelo Texas. After finishing high school early and not being super interested in college, Matt committed to being a 3rd generation flooring installer. After learning the ropes in California for many years, he made his way out to Texas for his wife to enjoy h…
 
This weeks guest is Reuben Potter. Reuben owns Floors By Southern Boys and has been an installer for 23 years. With only a 6th grade education he has created not only a successful installation business, but also a YouTube channel and an online store. Listen in to find out why formal education isn’t everything it is cracked up to be and how you can …
 
This weeks guest is Mike Somodean. Mike owns and operates MSCS Inc. in north Atlanta, GA. After emigrating from Romania and not returning when his work visa expired, Mike has been able to build the American dream through becoming a hardwood sand and finish craftsman. After years of running his business, getting more involved with the industry and l…
 
This weeks guest is Michelle Winters. Michelle owns and operates New Braunfels Flooring in New Braunfels, TX and is also the creator of the Women of the Flooring Business group on Facebook. After partnering with a successful installer in her area to help him get a showroom, Michelle was one day out of the blue left with an entire company to run and…
 
Thank you everyone for the support. I truly appreciate all of the listens, messages, emails, reviews, everything! Thank you to my sponsors and patrons on patreon. Thank you to all of my guests, this show would not be possible or nearly as interesting without you. You are all the true content creators of this endeavor. I just like to ask questions. …
 
This weeks guest is Jon Namba. Jon is the owner of Namba Services, Inc. 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. Find out why Jon says we need to invest in ourselves to get ahead. Listen in to find o…
 
This weeks guest is Matt Thibeau. Matt is from Ottawa, Ontario Canada. He runs Savant Marketing Agency and has a couple of marketing tips for us. Listen in to learn how you can better position your proposition, connect with more leads, and what it will take to run a successful ad campaign. www.SavantMarketingAgency.com Matt@MattThibeau.com Check ou…
 
This weeks guest is Scott Humphrey. Scott is the CEO of the World Floor Covering Association or WFCA. After starting in his fathers carpet mill at 7 years old, he eventually found his way as a sales rep for Shaw. From there he was promoted to being in charge of hiring all sales reps for Shaw. The WFCA came calling about the CEO position and after s…
 
This weeks guest is Barry Doveston. Barry runs Flooring Africa in Cape Town, South Africa. Their mission is to educate consumers and installers alike about proper installation techniques and differences in products. In Barry’s own words many laborers will steal with their eyes and call themselves an installer the next week. His goal is to bring top…
 
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