Glaziers Speak Out: On How They Stay Competitive
Anyone in this industry knows to survive you need to stay one step
ahead of the competition. When there is only so much that can be
done with pricing and products, successful businesses know it's
service that sells and quality workmanship that can edge out the
competition. Here's what glazing professionals say helps them stay
competitive. "It has to be our service and emphasis on good customer
relations," says Tamara Oldaker, owner of Glass World in Hobbs,
N.M., "Being able to offer fast, friendly and knowledgeable service
is what has helped us get ahead. "Our company services all of New
Mexico and southwest Texas.The fact that we are willing and able
to travel is another plus and helps make us a subcontractor of choice
for our larger customers." "We are good at what we do and because
of this we have earned a respected reputation in our service area,"
says Keith MacClenny, manager for Jack's Glass, a full service glass
shop in Houston. He says he believes putting in a hard, honest day's
work always pays off.
Mia Grayson, office manager for Labbe Glass in Hilton Head says
it's been their good customer service and experienced, knowledgeable
staff that has helped keep the company in business for more than
40 years. Labbe Glass is a full service glass shop serving the greater
Lowcounty area of South Carolina.
"It's tough to be competitive today," points out Rick Lyons, the
second generation of owners at Nelson Glass Service, a full service
glass shop in Newark, Ohio. "What has made the difference in keeping
our doors open for the past 35 years have been quality workmanship,
customer service and competitive pricing. With some 65 percent of
our business coming from returning customers, I think we're doing
"We keep our prices and overhead low and pass the savings onto
the customer when we can," says Chris Albrights, owner of Quality
Glass Block, a small, window replacement company in Milwaukee.
Jason Blundell, president of Clear Image Glass in Redmond, Wash.,
believes it is the quality of his company's work that has helped
it succeed. "We are a small company, only seven years old, but have
found a niche and are excelling," says Blundell. "We are conscientious
of the fact that time is a precious commodity and understand very
well that no one likes to have their time wasted. When we make an
appointment, we show up on time. When we say we will get something
done, we get it done. This really goes a long way with our customers."
So much so, says Blundell, that they sometimes can't keep up with
"For us, it's service and technology," says Karen Colacino, owner
of Hal's Glass in Bellflower, Calif. "We are in the glass replacement
business and have serviced the greater Los Angeles and Orange County
area since 1946. We don't want to be the cheapest and glass is glass
so we found other areas that help us to stand out above the rest.
We have made it a point to keep up with the latest technology and
utilize technological advances to our advantage. Our customers are
very happy to pay a competitive price for the type of service they
receive here, which we sum up nicely in our slogan: 'Our Service