Looking for certifications

Discussion in 'Industry News, Training & Organizations' started by Floorsmith, Apr 6, 2016.

  1. Floorsmith

    Floorsmith Pro Member

    I found you guys in the process of looking for Forbo and possibly Mondo cert's.
    The industry has degraded to the point that I can't make any real money any more. Seems like it's too saturated with self proclaimed pro's that create nothing but a bad image of us as a group. I feel that I need to separate myself from that crowd and find a more fulfilling Avenue to follow
  2. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    I don't know a better class of pros than what you will find here at TFP. I hope you will find what you need. I moved your post here because I thought your comments would make a good discussion in its own right. Thanks for joining.

  3. kylenelson

    kylenelson You'll find me on the floor I Support TFP Senior Member

    I can already tell you that you are on the right track :yesss: Certifications do not equal more money, but it does show someone that you are going to do a good job...which then translates in to you having to sell them on the fact that you charge more for your services. Some people feel bad about charging more. I see it as a win-win. You get paid more, the customer gets a better installation that will help their floor last longer.
  4. Floorsmith

    Floorsmith Pro Member

    Thank you Jim and Kyle.
    I have been on the same track for about ten years now and although they do reward us well for our efforts...When I find out that there is a better way I try to do all I can to acclimate me and my guys to those ways to keep us at number one spot. I am starting to see a swing to green building and would like to be involved in that movement. Any help would be much appreciated.
    Thank you
  5. Floorsmith

    Floorsmith Pro Member

    Another thing I want to say is down here in southern Louisiana we seem to have crews from all over the states come here and work cheap just to have work. It kills our ability to regulate the going rate. On top of that...what works in Texas or Michigan may or may not work in Louisiana depending.....
    We have so many moisture issues down here that you really have to know what your doing or you can get into a heap of trouble real quick. Contractors are using curing and sealing agents to get slabs to dry quick. The average Joe from Kokomo gets blindsided when his beautiful work pops off the slab. All because he will do it cheaper and the store owner is willing to risk it for the savings.
    I think way more guys need to be certified
    Almost anyone with a truck and a knife thinks he can just jump in and start turning a profit.
    That's why this industry standards are so poor...they let it happen
    Let's all get together and form a bond or some kind of group that shows we are willing to do whatever it takes to become more professional as a whole.

    Just my .02
  6. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    I think you're up to .06 cents! I commend your efforts.
  7. Daris Mulkin

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

    The thing with certifications is is how much do you plan to promote it. Will it really change how well you do things? I have been a certifier for CFI almost 20 years and the thing we find out is the day after all the testing only a handful apply what they have learned. Then it is back to the same old ways-grab what money you are offered and run. Most installers don't know how to run a business. Also if the money comes out of each individuals pocket for the certification he has the tendency to live by what he is taught more.


  8. David Hunt

    David Hunt Charter Member Senior Member Published

    Floorsmith, you're asking the right questions and your heart and head are definitely in the right place. If I may, I would like to offer a different perspective on certifications and that is this. Certifications and training sessions are NOT going to make you more money. However, what attending training and certifications will do is it will allow you to meet and develop new relationships with other like minded professionals in the industry. Likeminded professionals who have not only asked the very same questions you ask here, but a lot of them who have actually found the answers you seek.

    If we want to be more profitable we need to seek out, identify and mimic people who are. It's really that simple. Now, where's the best place to find profitable professionals? That's right, at training and certification events. It is for this reason that I would whole heartedly encourage you to not only attend every training and certification event you can. But to arrive early and plan to stay late.

    Hope this helps.

    With my kindest regards and best wishes,

    David Hunt
  9. Daris Mulkin

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

    And don't forget to ask a lot of questions. There are no dumb questions.Talk even with your competition. Surprising what you can learn from them. Everybody has something to offer.


  10. kwfloors

    kwfloors Fuzz on the brain Charter Member I Support TFP Senior Member

    Hey Daris, Does any of the CFI certs train you on how to run your business?
  11. Daris Mulkin

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

    Not the certs so much but they generally have a class at their convention.


  12. Rodney Henderson

    Rodney Henderson Pro Member

    This needs to be the most popular thread on this forum for the young guns like myself. I am pricing out my trip to dallas for the cfi convention in august and boy is it gonna be spendy! As much as it is gonna cost me though, i cant see how it wont be worth it. Like most of you have already said, it may not mean more money up front, but if it helps me streamline and maximize time more than it will turn into more money on the back end. But i do feel like as a sub that college business courses should also be a mandatory thing. Installation is the easiest part of my day, its the bookwork and managing/juggling multiple clients, and teaching/managing my one helper that is the hard part. Most people just dont want to put the time and money into better themselves and their business/craft. A good thing about this forum also shows me that there are exceptions like me who are interested in better the above items, they just arent in my area lol
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2016
  13. icanlayit2

    icanlayit2 Pro Member

    From my perspective, Certifications hasn't paid off any except to say i am certified. But that doesn't help much when the contractors want to get the lowest price, and I'm not the cheapest. I am certified in almost every type of commercial vinyl.....which costs quite a chunk. The only saving grace for me is that when those cheap installers do their work, and screw it up, The contractor then calls me to fix it and I charge the heck out of em. But what choice do they have? They know i can fix it, I then ask them why did you not use me first and avoid this? To which the reply is--you were not the cheapest, and the installer is paying you because we take it out of his bid? Certifications are great, but don't expect any return on the investment other than knowledge.
  14. Incognito

    Incognito No more Mr. Nice Guy! I Support TFP Senior Member

    I love trainings and certifications because they're FREE, I always enjoy learning, I'm typically getting paid to do so and it DOES increase the quantity and improve the quality of the jobs I'm working. I like when everyone on the job is not only a journeyman with 4 years of apprenticeship but also spent a few days learning the technicalities of the specific products we're handling. It sure reduces the on site conflicts with the guys who "done it like this for 30 years" and dont want to change.

    I don't have to fight with that stupidity so much any more------excepting when I'm the stupid one trying to do things the way I've always done them. Old habits die hard!

    By the way, let's get real. When you add up what I've paid in union dues since 1979--------NOTHING in this world is free. A portion of the "benefit" package goes to the apprenticeship programs. Our schools also receive State Department of Education funding. So that's my California tax dollars at work there.

    The trainings are becoming mandatory through customers, architects, manufacturer's, distributors, employers and our unions. Someone somewhere writes checks out for the trainers' salaries and expenses, plus the materials used, tools, equipment, facilities........etc. I can usually guess who bears the costs by the way the training are offered to me. Sometimes they are voluntary, meaning I can choose to go if I want. I'm not paid for that. If the shop dispatches me there then I'm on the clock and loving life.
  15. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Owner/Founder Administrator

    I agree. I posted a link to this discussion on TFP's facebook page. My hope is that other flooring professionals will share that post, or click the Share link below and share this topic on their favorite social network. It's a great way to support this discussion and TFP.
  16. Rodney Henderson

    Rodney Henderson Pro Member

    Getting the stuff for free is definitely a good reason to get them all Incognito! One of the benefits of being an employee for sure, but its surely not free for the sub lol! I feel like certification is as important to doing floor covering work as it is to do any other trade work. Or any work period that involves a skill, its the standard set for how things are to be done, plain and simple. Thats just an extra part of my 2 cents though, everybody is entitled to their opinions.
  17. Roland Thompson

    Roland Thompson Charter Member Senior Member

    Do you need certifications to make money? no. Has the money I have spent on certifications been worth every cent? Yes. Like Daris said, if you go back and do the same old thing, why should you get more. Like David said, you need to know your value. Reach for the star's. You might be surprised what you pull down. In this area we also have ton's of installers who will cut price down to almost nothing. I do not even waste my time with them. I know what it takes to live the life style I want to live. I price my work so I can.
    All I can tell you is all I need to do is get one job for someone and they never ask price again. I give them that WOW they have never seen before. And that is even before I start to install. A few things I do. I put my own wipe off mat at the front door to wipe my feet off on. I use painters tape ( Frog tape is what I like ) I tape all the corners that I am going to pass. I bring in a furniture blanket and make sure my tool box and tools stay on it when not being used. I vac. with a hepa vacumm before laying pad or preping for hard surface.I always wear a collared shirt that has been pressed to start the day in. This is just some of the things.
    Show them value and it will come.
    I was like lot's of installers back in my young day's. Then I started going to learn more. Meet people like David, Daris and many more.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Bill Vincent

    Bill Vincent Charter Member

    Floorsmith, I've said it many times before, and I can't say it enough-- Sell your quality!! During the last 8 years, while other people in my area were working for 1.50-2.00 a foot LESS than me, I stayed busy while they were sitting home and applying for public assistance. I spent literally years on forums like this and others, teaching AND LEARNING, and when it came time for me to use that knowledge and convey it to my customers, I had no trouble doing so, and feeling confident in the fact that what I was telling them was the best course of action. And for those times when I ran into the skeptic who'd been burnt by fast talking fly by nights, I had a copy of the TCNA Handbook in the truck so I could show them right from the tile industry's "Bible", that I knew what I was talking about. Keep in mind that in 2008, I'd only been operating in this area for about 6 years, so I was a relative unknown, in a small town rural area where everyone knows everyone, and nobody knew me. And I was still able to outwork people who'd been doing flooring in the area for decades. You need to know what you're talking about, and convey that with an air of confidence, and then be able to back it up if someone calls what they see as your bluff, by showing them spec in the handbook. If you can do that, and explain WHY certain things must be done when no one else is doing things that way, people won't mind paying a little more if they see they're getting fair value for their money. Try it and you'll see that this approach works.

    Not sure if I put it as a signature line here or not-- been a long time since I've posted here-- but I used to have a tag line that was a quote from Henry Ford, and it's very true--

    "Whether you think you can, or you think you can't, you're probably right."

    Edit-- I guess it IS here. :)
  19. DLong

    DLong Pro Member

    Certification is like a fat guy running on a treadmill eatin cake. His intentions are good. But he ain't making ground
    Nowadays everyone is about the bottom dollar. It's the rare ones (like in TFP) that it would actually mean something to. I'm going for Ardex cert soon only for the reason to better myself. I did Armstrong for the same reason. Because I want to be the best I can weather or not it will make me more money.
    • Like Like x 1
  20. Mike Antonetti

    Mike Antonetti I Support TFP Senior Member

    Ardex is good training, they sure as hell spent some money when I went through the class in Aliquippa. Kinda like the Fourth of July Fireworks when you see a shitload of money being burned up during the finale. So many products being mixed it was hard to keep track of.

    Been through a few courses and declined to take the tests for iicrc. The knowledge is where I make my money and knowing when and how to apply it.

    Titles and awards mean nothing to me, show me the money.

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