January/February 2014 Scouting Report

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Check out our January/February issue of The Scouting Report and find out how how to create S.M.A.R.T. goals in the new year. Learn how the PaintCare program has been benefiting member company Tommy's Paint Pot. Read how various member companies are keeping pace in the recovering economy and the advertising plans ALLPRO has for the new year! Find out how Shelby Paint is using innovative new programs like the Color Club to reach customers, and view frequently asked Spring Show questions and News and Views.

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<ul><li><p>An ALLPRO Publication VOL. 23, ISSUE 7 JANUARY / FEBRUARY 2014</p><p>By: Kelley Anderson</p><p>Creating S.M.A.R.T. GoalsIts the beginning of another new year and anotherfresh start. By now most of us have had time toreflect on the previous year and, if nothing else,take a mental inventory of our successes andfailures. We invariably approach each new yearwith every intention of building on the previousyears successes and minimizing those problemareas. That axiom is true whether youre a singlestore operator or a multi-store chain. Building onyour success and reaching new goals dependslargely on something as simple as how well youcommunicate with your employees. Are yousharing those learned lessons with youremployees? Have they been given clear directionand do they know what is expected of them?</p><p>Like any other business, your employees representboth your companys biggest expense, and yourmost valuable asset. Ultimately, your companysproductivity and profitability depends on youremployees performing to their full potential.Studies show a dramatic increase in both employeeand business performance when an organizationeffectively sets and closely links employee goals tothe companys overall business strategy. However,according to Robert Kaplan and David P. Norton ofthe Harvard School Press, "a mere 7% ofemployees today fully understand their company'sbusiness strategies and what's expected of them inorder to help achieve company goals. </p><p>Effectively setting and closely aligning employeeand business goals is critically important in anybusiness. Your employees must clearly understandhow their individual work serves both the short-and long-term goals of your business. To be mosteffective, goals should pass the S.M.A.R.T. test andbe specific, measurable, attainable, relevant andtimely. Following the S.M.A.R.T. guidelines providesclarity to your employees who will eventually beevaluated against these goals. Utilizing theS.M.A.R.T. method has proven to be very effectivein motivating employees to perform at peak levels. </p><p>To qualify as S.M.A.R.T. a goal must be:</p><p>SPECIFIC- Specific goals let people know exactlywhat's expected of them leaving no room formisinterpretation. Specific goals should be ableto answer the following: What needs to beaccomplished? Who is responsible? When must this be completed? Why is this important to the company?</p><p>MEASURABLE- When setting goals, you mustalso set specific criteria for measuring theprogress and achievement of those goals. Thismotivates your employees to plan, aim for targetdates, and reach objectives.</p><p>ATTAINABLE - Setting unattainable goals servesto demotivate, rather than motivate, youremployees. By setting ambitious, yet practical,goals you will inspire your employees to fullyleverage their abilities and all availableopportunities in order to achieve them.</p><p>RELEVANT - Employees must be able to see howa specific goal is relevant to them and the workthey perform in your company. Additionally, bykeeping goals relevant, you will help employeesbetter understand their connection to yourcompany's objectives and the importance of theirindividual goals.</p><p>TIMELY - To be most effective, goals must have aclearly defined time-frame including a target ordeadline date. This provides a sense of urgencyand serves to motivate individuals to beginworking on their goals immediately.</p><p>When your employees see how they can make adirect contribution to your company's success,they begin to focus on working more efficiently.So as you start to set those business goals for2014 keep these ideas in mind, and rememberthat with the start of 2014 come endlesspossibilities. The ALLPRO team wishes you all aprosperous and happy new year!</p></li><li><p>components you may have to deal with. Here aresome basics: </p><p> An assessment is charged to the manufacturerfor qualified recyclable products shipped into a PaintCare covered state. This assessment flows through to the retailer, sometimes through several steps of distribution. </p><p> The retailer then adds the charge into the purchase price at the time of purchase. You may be required by law to show the recovery fee assessment as a separate line item on yoursales receipts, or this may be optional. </p><p>This is an area where it makes good sense tofollow your competition as it can eliminateconfusion to the consumer. However you decide,stick with it and remain consistent. For the firstyear or so we had to remind our contractors andvolume purchasers to add the recovery fee to theircosts. Most of us have lost a job over a smallermargin than the 75 cent per gallon recovery fee. Ifone day you quote prices to a contractor excludingthe fee, and then add it the next, you could createan unwanted service issue. </p><p>Assessment Charges:Be aware you will have to make some adjustmentsto your POS system to accommodate theassessment charges. The good news is theproviders of this type of software are wellprepared with solutions developed for the stateswhich have been implementing the program for afew years now. Even though the framework forthe solution exists you are still going to have somework ahead. Within your inventory you will haveproducts which qualify for the recycling program,and those that dont. In general, you only want torecover the fee for an item if you are charged oneby the vendor you purchased it from. Forexample, two-component products are notconsidered recyclable and therefore are notcharged an assessment upon purchase from themanufacturer. You arent going to charge for a feeyou didnt pay (are you?), so you need a methodof turning off the assessment on this specificproduct, or class of product. This all depends onhow your point of sale system is set up, but Iwould recommend doing some of the work now toavoid future implementation difficulties. </p><p>Collection Sites:So, now you are all set up to collect fees to drivethe PaintCare program within your state. Where isthe opportunity to gain an advantage on yourcompetition? While every outlet that sells paint inyour state will be required to collect the fee, only asmall percentage will qualify and be chosen ascollection sites. Not all of your competitors, even</p><p>How to Benefit from PaintCareStewardship Programs</p><p>By Craig Bond</p><p>Out here in Oregon we talk slow, wear socks andsandals (together), and care deeply for theenvironment. I dont know if it is really a culturaldifference, or if its just because we have someenvironment left to take care of. Many folks backeast consider our entire state to be one largeNational Forest, so it was no surprise when in 2009Oregon enacted legislation which established astatewide paint stewardship pilot program.Perhaps the only real surprise is California wasntfirst, but they werent far behind as their programstarted in 2012. Connecticut came on board thisyear, and Rhode Island will start a recyclingprogram in 2014. Laws are in the books to createprograms in Vermont, Minnesota and Maineby 2015. </p><p>Many industry experts and organizations predictthese post-consumer paint management programswill be nationwide by 2020. As is the case withany change, those who are prepared may have anadvantage. It is my hope that this article may helpyou decide what roles you can play in paintrecycling, and perhaps gain a competitiveadvantage. I am not going to spend a great dealof time describing the PaintCare stewardshipprogram in detail, as more information andspecifics can be found at www.paintcare.org. Myfocus will be on how the program has impactedmy business and the community I serve. </p><p>About PaintCare Stewardship Programs:The PaintCare stewardship program is a non-profitprogram established to manage the reuse,recycling and proper disposal of unusedarchitectural paint. To participate in thesestewardship programs there are two basiccategories of actions you will have to consider.First, is what you will be obligated to do by law asa retailer of architectural coatings and the secondis an opportunity you can choose on a voluntarybasis. Since the laws may vary by state I can only speak generally about which</p><p>2</p></li><li><p>if they wanted, could be collection sites. If you arewilling, and chosen, you could have access toprofessional contractors and consumers whowould not otherwise cross your threshold.Additionally, many consumers are put off bypaying a fee to a retail er who is not providing theadditional service of being a collection site. Dontsign up immediately; this decision is going torequire significant thought. </p><p>Things to Consider:You need to have space to store the dump bins(provided by PaintCare) which hold the collectedpaint. While these bins are only the size of astandard pallet, we have 5-6 of them in rotationand they can eat up space quickly. Recycling paintis messybusiness, and asa collection siteyou should beprepared for thepossibility ofleaking cans.You must bewilling to trainyour staffbeyond eventhe programrequirements.They will needto know how tohandle acustomer who is a little upsetthat you canttake theirmayonnaise jarfull of whatlooks like motor oil as part of a paint recyclingprogram. And on that note, be prepared for thosecustomers who will just dump non-qualifyingmaterial in your parking lot. If you havent lostheart yet, inform your customers of your reasonsfor deciding to be a collection site in the first place.Sure you want to be recognized as anenvironmentally conscious business whichcontinually looks for ways to serve the community, but you also want to sellmore paint. </p><p>Be Prepared:Devise a plan and train your people on how tomarket and sell to those who are dropping offpaint. This is the only way to make it worthwhile.Develop a short form to use during collectionwhich gathers the basic name, address, phone oremail address along with the brand and quantity ofpaint dropped off. Leave room on the form to</p><p>write down any non-qualifying products thecustomer may have had in their vehicle along withthe license plate number. This information can bevery useful if illegal dumping becomes a problemfor you. We have handed out coupons whichthanked the potential customer for recycling theirpaint and reducing a possible hazard to thecommunity. If you do nothing else, have your staffthank them and ask them to consider you for theirnext painting project.</p><p>About Belonging to the PaintCareStewardship Program:My strongest endorsement to participate is theanswer to the question I am asked over and overwhen fellow retailers find out Tommys is a</p><p>collection site.The question is,Would you makethe same decisionknowing thenwhat you knownow? Myanswer dependson the day. If youhappen to catchme on a Mondaymorning just afterI discover a boxof miscellaneouscontainers ofunknown liquidsin our backparking lot I mightrashly answerno. The other99 times out of</p><p>100 I am more likelyto have just received a compliment from a regularcustomer who appreciates the extra service, or Iperhaps had a first time visitor exclaim howbeautiful our store is, and the answer would beyes, definitely yes. Dont let this article precludeyou from asking me about the PaintCare recyclingprogram should you meet me at a future ALLPROmeeting. I would be happy to share more of myexperiences with the program. Ill be the one bythe pool showing off my Oregon tan, wearingsandalswith socks.</p><p>Craig Bond is the owner of Tommys Paint Pot in Eugene, Oregon.</p><p>3</p><p>PaintCare Collection Site at Tommys Paint Pot</p></li><li><p>Keeping Pace in a Recovering Economyby Kelley Anderson</p><p>As Henry Ford once said, Coming together is abeginning; keeping together is progress; workingtogether is success. ALLPRO has been in businessfor 53 years and began with only a handful of paintretailers. Today, our membership consists of 284companies. Its safe to say the ALLPRO membershiphas witnessed both progress and success. Althoughthe past few years have brought a strugglingeconomy and low profit margins, market researchindicates a successful turnaround in the paint andcoatings industry - one that is estimated to continueinto 2014. </p><p>Bloomberg BusinessWeek reports that U.S.stock marketperformance, resurgenthousing markets,improved laborconditions and FederalReserve reports ofmoderate economicexpansion are positiveinfluencers of the U.S.srecovery in 2013.According to 55 percentof CFOs, the U.S.economy is now poisedto expand in themonths ahead. </p><p>Even more good news,American CoatingsAssociation has published a U.S. Paint &amp; CoatingsIndustry Market Analysis for 2010-2015 whichprofiles the coatings industrys 21 market sectorsover the past two years, offering analysis andproviding projections for sector performance forthose five years. The study found that as the U.S.continues to emerge from the effects of the 2007-2009 recession (when both manufactured goodsinput and construction spending declined sharply)the paint and coatings market is expected torespond to improvements in both manufacturingand construction with significant increases in bothvolume and value. Both increased domestic demandand favorable export opportunities will fuel thedemand for increased US paint and coatingsprotection, the report says. </p><p>More projections include Freedonias estimation thatworld paint and coatings demand will witness ayearly growth of more than 5% by the year 2015.Market expansion will be fuelled by increasedactivity in the global building construction sector,with residential construction in particular witnessing</p><p>4</p><p>strong recovery in the U.S. Robert W. Baird &amp; Co.housing update reports that as negative equitycontinues to recede we should witness additionalspending on home-improvement projects. Theupdate also indicates that new housing inventoryhas entered the market as existing single-familyhome inventory and new home inventory increasedmore than 4%. These indicators demonstrate thatthe turnaround we are witnessing in the paint andcoatings industry is sure to continue. </p><p>While these figures sound promising, first handtestimonial from fellow ALLPRO members says it all.A number of member companies have witnessedremarkable success in their business from 2012 to</p><p>2013, and a few haveoffered to share theirsuccess in order todemonstrate howencouraging the year ahead appearsfor our industry andmembership inparticular.</p><p>Clement Ebbo ofClements Paint inAustin, TX is a newermember of ALLPRO,having joined in2011. He owns twostores and reportsthat both retail andcommercial saleswere way up in 2013.He claims Business</p><p>has never been better,we are opening a thirdlocation soon and arewithin a couple of days</p><p>of beating last years sales (quoted in September).He states that with the turnaround in the housingmarket and the increasing number of remodelsoccurring, paint has been selling like crazy.ALLPRO has contributed much to his success,Clement claims, as the vendor products are verypopular. In particular, Petoskey Plastics, TNT Caulk,Trimaco masking paper and ALLPRIME productshave been doing very well in his stores. </p><p>Anne Dages of Dages Paint in Louisville, KYreports that her business has seen an increase inproperty maintenance accounts in the past year.These accounts he...</p></li></ul>