Victoria Downing, president of Remodelers Advantage Inc., is a leading authority in the remodeling industry. For nearly 30 years, she has worked with owners of remodeling companies across the United States and Canada to help them build strong, consistently profitable businesses. She is known for her high-energy educational seminars, as well as her in-depth knowledge of the best practices that transform company performance.
At the NAHB International Builders’ Show® (IBS), Victoria will be presenting the session “Growing Your Remodeling Business: Smashing the Barriers to Increase Profits.” We caught up with her to get a sneak peek into her session.
NAHB: Without giving too much away, what will people learn at your sessions?
VICTORIA: First of all, attendees will learn how important delegation is for growth. Too many small business owners don’t understand that in order to grow and meet goals, you need to let go. We’re going to talking about the systems and processes that allow them to do that while minimizing risks. It’s not this big scary thing. You can do it in a step-by-step manner that allows you to maintain control while giving up some of the duties and allowing other people to help support the business. There will be lots of success stories shared about remodelers from across the country.
NAHB: What’s the one thing you are looking forward to most while attending IBS?
VICTORIA: Networking with our roundtable members because they’re a group of very sophisticated business owners, and I learn so much from them. I want to know what they’re learning about at the Builders’ Show because if it’s important to them, it’s probably important to the industry as a whole.
NAHB: What’s the most interesting industry trend you are seeing right now?
VICTORIA: I think one of the things that’s going to be leading a lot of conversations in 2020 is the implementation of lean processes. This leads into another challenge, which is the lack of skilled labor. People want to know how they can do more with less, and one of the ways is by implementing lean.
NAHB: What is the one piece of practical advice you would give someone starting out?
VICTORIA: To embrace their role as a businessperson and learn how to understand the numbers. If you don’t know your numbers, you don’t know how to plan. You don’t know how to price and sell, etc.
Another piece of advice I have is to invest in building a community around them—a community of peers. I see the power of working with peers, whether it’s through round table programs, or getting mentors in the industry and belonging to associations. Don’t be by yourself. Get out there and network and build yourself a community because it can make a huge difference in the speed of your progress.
NAHB: What was the best concert you ever attended?
VICTORIA: I’ve attended a bunch, including a concert by KISS, but my favorite concert recently was Pink. She is so physical!
NAHB: What are you currently streaming?
VICTORIA: The Americans on Netflix. Spy-drama!
NAHB: What is the coolest thing you are working on right now?
VICTORIA: A new master class for senior designers and design managers. It is going to be all about putting together the design process, buttoning down accountability and keeping momentum.
NAHB: What is your favorite family tradition?
VICTORIA: Mimosas in front of the Christmas tree while opening presents.
NAHB: If you had to work but didn’t need the money, what would you choose to do?
VICTORIA: I love animals so I would work with rescue animal organizations.
NAHB: Do you have a success quote?
VICTORIA: “Success isn’t a result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire.” – Arnold Glasgow
“Growing Your Remodeling Business: Smashing the Barriers to Increase Profits” is one session in the IBS Custom Building & Remodeling Track. It will take place on Tuesday, January 21, from 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Learn more about 150+ education sessions, and register at BuildersShow.com.