Are Certifications Helping or Hurting

Discussion in 'Industry News, Training & Organizations' started by Mike Sahli, Sep 3, 2010.

  1. Elmer Fudd

    Elmer Fudd Administwative Asst. Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Well.......actually the way it happened for electricians was that there were a bunch of Sparky Yahoo's running around and doing slipshod work. Fires started and people were injured and killed. So the State govt stepped in and wrote standards and required licensing. Local Govt saw that there was money to be made with permits, inspections, and licensing, the rest is HISTORY.

    Now because flooring doesn't KILL anyone or make them get sick (plumbers) we probably will not see Govt. intervention (unless there is BIG money to be made).

    The only looser with a lousy install is Joe consumer and the govt doesn't care about him unless it means big bucks for them.

    This is of course the simplified version.
  2. Peter Kodner

    Peter Kodner Inspector Floors Charter Member Senior Member

    Mike, can you explain this? I, quite frankly don't see it this way.

    I am a huge fan of continuing education, certified or not. I have always been a participant and advocate of it. The bottom line for me in my career, is I wanted educated competitors. Too many projects went to unqualified companies. Who lost? The company frequently went out of business from the losses on the job that had not business in taking. The end user who got the shoddy work and wound up paying again to have it fixed/replaced. The4 manufacturer and specifier lost respect and potentially future work as some blame stuck to them. I lost as my company did not get the work at the price it should have been sold for and thereby all my employees suffered too.

    Who wins? Maybe the CG (but again some of the stench rightfully sticks to him- he started the ball rolling by accepting the low or worse, shopping legitimate bids after he was awarded the project). Maybe the flooring contractor, if the loss didn't put him out of business.

    I have always found this situation can be avoided up front by rationally explaining why our certifications (and we constantly had in house training programs for all types of employees- installation, sales, project management, clerical, etc.) and continuing education efforts were cost effective and valuable to the end user. If someone cannot, or will not, comprehend actual value, I have also found out I was far better off not doing their work!!! It is always cheaper to do it right the first time!

    What does this mean to an installer? Jim touched on it. Certs are just pieces of paper unless you take the initiative to do something with them. This does require effort on your part to establish the difference between you, who are active in always improving, and the guy who was bagging groceries last week.

    More than a few members of TFP, and most eloquently by Dobby, the fallacies of thinking constant improvement of skills, and the documentations of these efforts will not result in an improvement in your business. The facts prove this to be true in every imaginable business. The one caveat is you have to be willing to try and persevere through the fits and starts when you begin. The only thing that can prevent success is an attitude of self-defeat.

    BTW: this is a great thread as documented by the interest in it, i.e;. 7 pages of posts and 1000+ readers!!!!!
  3. Barry Carlton

    Barry Carlton I Support TFP Senior Member Published

    I cannot speak for Mike, but...and this is serious, in my area the more education you get and make known and the more certifications you have and mkae that known as well the less you are used at the retail level. It does tilt in favor of the less qualified in this area. Not that has stopped me or lessened my ardor for education and certification in the least.
  4. TwoStar

    TwoStar Maybe Three

    Jeez...I was on a roll and you ruined it. LOL

    My view is that flooring is an invisible industry, for now. No one has ever asked my what it is like to be a carpet layer. Many people are surprised that it is a full time job. "You have enough work to have a helper? Wow." Once the other trades are squeezed enough, it will be our turn.

    I can see it.
    Congressman: "Laying carpet is a full-time job for some folks?"
    Guy installing his Livingroom carpet: "Yup."
    Congressman: "Are you guys overly regulated by the government?"
    Guy: "I dunno"
    Congressman(thinking): "More control and revenue...YAY!!!!!"
  5. polestretch

    polestretch Senior Member

    Nimrod, You can ride down with me, it's only 254 miles from my house.:eek: It would be much cheaper!:yesss:
  6. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    I'm sure that you were posting this in jest but the last certification I was on in Louisville, Kentucky there was a fellow that flew in from Alaska to take the testing for R-ll and C-ll. 15 minutes into the hands on portion he said he was dropping back as he had no clue as to what was expected of commercial and hadn't done that much of it.
    I'll bet his boss was happy after buying his tickets and paying for the taking of the cert testing.

  7. nimrod

    nimrod Pro Member

    please feel sorry for me guys....I have to deal with this everyday!

    wow I know that would have pushed my buttons if I was his boss ! Did I not read on CFI website that when you sign up you r given study guide and told what ur supposed to know???
  8. Isabella Flooring

    Isabella Flooring Pro Member

    I agree with Roland,

    INSPECT I is someone we all know, I apologize he used the some numbers I was told and listen to from a spokeswoman in many seminars attended in the last year.

    I like to also add that, Certain Certs can be paid for in the following Steps.

    Mohawk ColorCenter/Floorscapes dealers are Intittled to 1 scholarship per year towards CFI Mohawk U Class, (And I beleive that their is 2000 mohawk colorcenters nation wide from what I was Told today) If the retailor elecs to use it that way.

    I also beleive CCA Members have a similar class CCA global partners consist of, Flooring America, Flooring Canada, Abbey Carpets, Carpet One's.


    WFCA, World Floor Covering Assoc., Offer's, You Join for I beleive $250.00 dollars they give you $500.00 scarlarship funds.

    The opp. is out their, if 1 shall seek it,

    My opinon is is still not touched, More local classes here on the west coast.

    1 per year just dont cut it on the west coast. The 15 to 20 installer rules needs to be trimmed, The retailor knows it is out there, we Installers need to pound them alittle,

    And remember to return the answer to the owners.

    Box Stores and being certified faster than you boss!!!!!!!!

    I didnt proof this so hopefully it made since
    Last edited: Sep 7, 2010
  9. Mike Sahli

    Mike Sahli Pro Member

    15 to 20 students is a big class to me, when I train its as hands on as possible and we talk allot about real world issues that they will run into and I personally can't work with a group that big and give as much personal instruction as I would like or the student may need.

    I think for certs to mean any thing the cert body has to work hard to connect installs with specific installers and defend the higher install rates necessary to keep the best installers working, after all, these are the people that do the real training of the next generation of installers, not the cert body or the installation trainers, we only help.

    Young installers need to work day in and day out with quality installers to really understand what it means to be a professional and this industry just doesn't pay enough to support installers.
  10. Daris Mulkin

    Daris Mulkin The One and Only Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    You are doing your classes alone I presume. Generally on a certification class it is at least 3 people depending on the amount of people attending. I usually can handle 6-10 myself depending on the group and how well they know their stuff.
    There are study guides that are sent out if registered in time. But we usually find out that they weren't given out by the shops.


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