<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none" src="https://www.facebook.com/tr?id=257026668087156&amp;ev=PageView&amp;noscript=1">

Things to Do Before Putting Up That "Out of Office"

By Becky Wiedemann on Jun 15, 2018 3:49:33 PM

It's summer which means for many of us, it's time for a vacation! However, as a small business owner, it can be stressful even thinking about leaving the office for a week. Here are a few tips on preparing for your absence. 

Continue Reading

BIZCON 2018 Registration Opens

By Becky Wiedemann on Jun 13, 2018 1:53:02 PM

October 4-5, Lost Pines Resort & Spa, Austin, TX

Do you feel like you’ve been thrown into a role you know very little about,
but where your success is both expected and necessary?

Are lingering, but seemingly unanswerable, business questions
about your kitchen and bath practice haunting your nightmares?

Would you give your kingdom for a decent mentor?

Do you long to commiserate and trade ideas with peers in the same position?

First, take a deep breath and relax — you’re not alone. Which is why we’ve created an event that’s going to answer all your questions, boost your career, and give you the confidence to lead like a badass boss.

Topics: BIZCON
Continue Reading

More Than Just a Buying Group...

By SEN Design Group on May 11, 2018 10:24:02 AM

SEN Is more than just a buying group. It's a business development group, dedicated to making its members more profitable and successful than ever before. With 6 Unfair Advantages, SEN Members rise above the competition by earning, and learning more. 

1. Financial Know-How 

We’ll help you get to know your numbers, discover what’s not working and learn how to make adjustments that keep the profit rolling in.

2. Purchasing Power

We give you access to reduced product rates and annual rebates that put your average margins way ahead of your competition.

3. Higher Gross-Profit Margins

We’ll help you learn how to market yourself in a way that proves your value and raises your gross profit margin.

4. Sales Professionalism 

Learn how to leverage a consumer-friendly sales process, develop better sales techniques, train recruits and turn prospects into repeat paying customers.

5. Strategic Community

By bringing our members together, we create a supportive community that works toward making everyone involved more profitable.

6. Automation

Our pooled resources allow SEN Design Group to produce revolutionary assets that every member can profit from.

That's it! It's that easy. Business owners who embrace and implement all 6 Unfair Advantages set the company up for true success..and turn it into an engine for wealth!

Want to jump in immediately? The last SEN Business School of 2018 is coming up this July. 

Complete Details & Link to Register Here

For more information on any of the Unfair Advantages a SEN Membership offers you, contact us! We're ready to help you earn more, and learn more. 


Continue Reading

Another KBIS Has Come and Gone...

By Becky Wiedemann on Jan 26, 2018 10:31:32 AM

KBIS 2018 was a great success with an estimated increase in attendance, a definite increase in square footage, and over 600 exhibitors! The SEN Team was in full force both walking the show and presenting sessions during Voices From The Industry. 

Continue Reading

Discovering The Gross Profit Margin To Make Serious Money

By SEN Design Group on Jan 12, 2018 11:31:19 AM

Contrary to popular industry belief, a 40% gross profit margin may not be the magical number that leads to the best bottom line in the kitchen and bath business. The correct number for a particular business may be significantly higher or lower. It really turns on three things: (1) a “market-rate” owner’s salary, (2) the operation’s overhead including a “market rate” rent, and (3) the owner’s desired annual return on his investment.

Continue Reading

Embracing the Pantone Color of the Year

By Becky Wiedemann on Dec 21, 2017 12:45:19 PM

By now you have likely heard that the 2018 Color of the Year is Ultra Violet. It's a bright and vibrant color that brightens up this Winter season. 

Topics: Design Trends
Continue Reading

How To Be More Profitable In The New Year

By SEN Design Group on Dec 19, 2017 9:30:04 PM

The first reason why a bigger top revenue line only marginally affects one’s bottom line is that more errors are made with higher sales volumes; so gross margins typically decline by a few percentage points. Secondly, variable expenses - like sales commissions and payroll taxes - increase with higher sales volumes. And third, more staff people are usually needed to support the higher sales volumes, adding to the overhead.

Continue Reading

Yes, Another Holiday Gift Guide

By Becky Wiedemann on Dec 12, 2017 3:36:38 PM

You’re probably already thinking, really? Another holiday gift guide?! Yup! But we think this roundup of gift ideas is perfect for an office gift exchange, or even something for a recent customer.

Continue Reading

6 Ways to Make A Small Kitchen Look Large

By Becky Wiedemann on Nov 7, 2017 9:22:20 AM

Sometimes a small kitchen is a reality, and that’s okay, but that doesn’t mean it has to FEEL tiny. It is very possible to create an airier feeling in a small space, while creating extra room with a few design hacks, AND still keeping style, personality, and functionality. In no particular order, let the wild faux-spaciousness tips begin!

Topics: Design Trends
Continue Reading

Tucson Fall Conference Recap

By Becky Wiedemann on Oct 25, 2017 12:06:09 PM

Another conference has come and gone and boy, was it a blast! Tucson, AZ was the perfect backdrop for the Fall educational and networking event with Members, Vendor Partners, and Guests.

Continue Reading

The Skill I Needed At My First Promotion - John O'Reilly and Nora DePalma

By Nora DePalma on Oct 18, 2017 9:09:49 AM

John O'Reilly and Nora DePalma of NEXTGen sponsor O'Reilly DePalma discuss leadership and finance as areas they wish they knew more about before receiving their first promotions.

Topics: NEXTgen
Continue Reading

The Skill I Needed At My First Promotion - Barb Buchman, Task Lighting

By Barb Buchman on Oct 11, 2017 4:34:09 PM

The business skill I wish I had for my first promotion was how to be an effective leader to build a high-performing team.

Topics: NEXTgen
Continue Reading

The Skill I Needed At My First Promotion - Gordon Sutton

By Gordon Sutton on Sep 25, 2017 8:00:00 AM

Management was the skill I most needed at my first promotion.

Continue Reading

New Panel Added to NEXTgen Conference

By Nora DePalma on Sep 22, 2017 10:55:50 AM

What do you wish you knew about business success in the kitchen and bath industry when you were just starting out?

Topics: NEXTgen
Continue Reading

NARI CEO: The Business Skill I Needed at My First Promotion

By Fred Ulreich on Sep 14, 2017 3:08:40 PM

My first job out of college was in retail marketing with an international oil company.  Anything and everything to do with service stations, from the refineries to the fuel pumps, that was the business. 

Continue Reading

The Business Skill I Needed at My First Promotion - WarmlyYours NEXTGen Sponsor

By Elodie Pasek on Aug 28, 2017 7:50:19 AM

One thing I learned early on in my career is that learning is lifelong. No matter what level of formal education anyone attains, it is just the start. I always keep learning because business is always changing.

Continue Reading

Handling Objections Successfully

By Becky Wiedemann on Jul 25, 2017 4:38:01 PM

More than likely, you've come up against ojbections from a client before. Maybe, more often than you'd like. But how you handle it can make the difference in ultimately gaining the sale, or not. Dale Carnegie has developed a powerful, structured response to handling objections and a few of the steps are outlined below.

Continue Reading

Marketing Your Integrity Enhances Profitability

By Becky Wiedemann on Jun 12, 2017 3:11:58 PM

Ten years ago Faith Popcorn, the futurist guru, wrote “what will make us buy one product over another is a feeling of partnership with the seller” … “that decency is not only the only way to behave, but decency can also be profitable” … and “we want to buy from a person … a person whom we trust.”

Continue Reading

Prepping Your Business For Sale

By SEN Design Group on Apr 26, 2017 9:17:36 AM

By Ken Peterson, CKD and Leah Peterson, SEN Design Group

Topics: NEXTgen
Continue Reading

The Art & Power Of Collaboration

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Mar 13, 2017 4:15:46 PM

About eight years into the kitchen/bath design profession, I developed a different way of doing business that completely transformed my operation, producing results far beyond all expectations. This new sales process was predicated on four core marketing principles:

Continue Reading

Top 10 Best Practices to Make Your Business Stronger

By Becky Wiedemann on Feb 8, 2017 9:00:00 AM

Having launched the kitchen/bath industry’s first buying and business development group in 1994, the SEN Management Team has had an opportunity to work with hundreds of design firm owners. We have analyzed their financial statements, studied their business models up close and personal, critiqued their operations onsite, and coached owners for many months on end …. and through both good and bad economic times.

Continue Reading

SEN Design Group Expands Kitchen and Bath Education Team

By Becky Wiedemann on Feb 3, 2017 2:16:51 PM

Veteran Dealer Dan Luck to Join as Education Manager

Continue Reading

What is a Kitchen and Bath Buying Group?

By Becky Wiedemann on Jan 18, 2017 12:55:33 PM

Ah, yes. The familiar question. It is usually preceeded with "What is SEN Design Group?," however. After a great week at the Kitchen & Bath Industry Show in Orlando, FL, it seems appropriate to address the often asked question of, "What is a kitchen and bath buying group?" 

Continue Reading

NextGen Matters: A Generational Conversation Begins

By SEN Design Group on Jan 9, 2017 10:00:00 AM

For nearly 20 years, our Founder and President, Ken Peterson, CKD, has had a sought-after business management column in Kitchen and Bath Design News Magazine. Ken, who continues to be active in the company, now oversees education for SEN, and his daughter, Leah, began running daily operations three years ago as Executive Vice President. 

Topics: NEXTgen
Continue Reading

Why Showroom Size And Content Is Critical To Profitability

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Dec 16, 2016 9:14:09 PM

Contrary to popular opinion, a bigger showroom is NOT always better. At least, not if you want your firm to make a healthy profit. It might be good for your ego, for your sales staff’s use to make a good living, and for your vendors who love having so much of their product on display there. But a bigger showroom may not be good at all for your bottom line.

Continue Reading

How To Organize Personnel For Maximum Productivity & Growth

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Nov 21, 2016 2:00:00 AM

Ours is an industry that in many ways is more people-intensive than capital-intensive. To be successful, startups will definitely need proper capitalization (usually through long-term loans) to finance their showroom displays, office equipment, organizational expenses, and 4-6 months of fixed overhead expenses. But good cash flow from assertive payment terms with residential clientele enables most mainstream kitchen and bath firms to not require much borrowing for working capital purposes. That feature alone can make this industry quite appealing for budding entrepreneurs.

Continue Reading

Placing A Value On Your Business

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Oct 24, 2016 2:01:00 AM

There are a number of solid reasons to value your business – even on annual basis. First, if your spouse will inherit the business upon your death, your company should have enough term insurance on your life to be able to buy back the stock from your spouse. That action assumes, of course, that you would like (a) to see your company be perpetuated for the benefit of your staff and your clients and (b) your spouse has neither the interest nor the skill to operate it.

Continue Reading

The Use Of Boldness In Sales

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Sep 29, 2016 1:01:00 AM

Sixty years since the advent of the modern kitchen/bath industry, design firm owners are still not making nearly enough money for the beautiful, functional, and complex projects they design and produce. A bold statement, yes. Here's my proof that dealers are not charging enough for their work. The vast majority:

Continue Reading

The Value of Benchmarking

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Apr 13, 2016 2:00:00 AM

Congratulations are in order! As a kitchen/bath firm owner, you survived both the Great Recession and the Reticent Recovery. Showroom traffic is considerably better. Consumers are more optimistic. You are busy preparing more proposals and closing more sales. Things are finally back to normal after a rough few years.

Continue Reading

Focus on Gross Profit

By Ken Peterson, CKD on Aug 12, 2015 5:00:00 PM

Don't focus on the top line. Gross Margin Dollars - and Gross Profit Percentage - are the two most important numbers on your Income Statement. In other words, it's not how much you sell in volume, it's how much money you make on each job sold. 

Continue Reading