Courses Added to CertainTeed Continuing Education Webinar Schedule

Building professionals can look forward to earning more free credit hours this year, thanks to additions to the CertainTeed Building Knowledge Academy of Continuing Education (ACE) webinar course schedule. Topics include specifying high-performance materials for medical facility interiors, sustainable systems for the building envelope and cool roofing. Residential landscape design and fence systems will also be covered.

“This year, we are celebrating more than 100,000 credit hours earned by architects and design professionals,” says Jill Betters, manager, commercial and architectural programs for CertainTeed Corp. “It’s a milestone to be proud of, as we strive to be the best and most convenient resource for continuing education and technical information. Webinars provide a unique opportunity to have a dialogue with the architecture and construction industry in real time.”

“Landscape and Residential Fence Systems: An Overview,” 2 to 3 p.m. ET, Tuesday, Dec. 8, will cover will the advantages and disadvantages of four kinds of fencing materials for residential fencing systems. Attendees will learn about the vinyl manufacturing process, commonly used test standards, the ICC code for swimming pool fencing and vinyl fence installation methods.

Later that same week, “Up on the Roof: Asphalt Shingles,” 1 to 2 p.m., Thursday, Dec. 10, will go over the key components within an asphalt shingle that contribute to solar reflectance and reduce the heat island effect. Learning objectives include how to properly ventilate roofing systems in order to reduce energy consumption within the building and increase indoor air quality; how the recycling of asphalt shingles contribute to a sustainable environment; the benefits of ENERGY STAR-rated roofing products and more.

All CEU courses are accredited by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) for one learning unit. Many are also certified for AIA Health Safety and Welfare (HSW) and Green Building Certification Institute (GBCI) credential maintenance program, giving professionals the credits they need and the product and system knowledge to specify smarter. The online academy also helps users easily organize and keep track of their completed courses and earned credits.

In addition, online content is accessible 24/7 via multiple platforms and devices, giving users the ability to choose how and when they want to learn—whether by attending scheduled seminars or taking an online self-guided course.

Perseverance Will Keep You Ahead of the Competition

I have never climbed a ladder to inspect a job my company bids on, but that has never been an obstacle to winning roofing contracts. I know a great many roofers who have climbed the proverbial “ladder” to the top of a company they now run from the windowed corner office. A lack of hands-on experience has never been an obstacle for me. In fact, just ignore that I’m a woman working in a predominately male construction industry and I will also ask you to disregard that I’m paralyzed from the chest down. That has not been an impediment either—as difficult as that may be to believe.

No, I have not allowed this long list of potential challenges to be an obstacle (for long!) to my business success. Doing so would just not make good business sense.

When I see an obstacle in business, it’s a boulder in the road and my business sense shifts into full gear: Get over it, around it, smash through it or phone a friend with a crane. I never choose another path. I never give up. I simply don’t allow an obstacle to loom larger than my own determination.

The unwavering willingness to “get the job done” is a common thread I share with many hard-working roofers. However, there is a secret weapon that separates those who marginally succeed and those who are, well, let’s just say “comfortably successful”. I call it perseverance.

Many industry people are silently nodding their heads in agreement saying to themselves, “yeah, that’s me”. But are you too comfortable? It takes more than true grit to persevere in the highly competitive roofing business world of today.

Not only do we face the ever-present competition, there are increased regulations, greater safety standards, high costs for workers’ compensation, not to mention the shrinking pool of qualified professional roofers. We have a lot that challenges us!

Today, perseverance will cement your future success because if you don’t stay ahead of the curve, boulders, like the newest technology, higher industry standards in energy efficiency, new and improved environmentally responsible products and guaranteed safety standards, will stop you. These boulders require greater perseverance, as does meeting customer demands for knowledge and understanding their needs.

To persevere in the roofing business, you have to continue to challenge your team (and yourself) at every turn. Encourage learning and invest in employee training and professional development. As a business owner, I take the lifelong approach to learning in my business. When I had questions and was hungry to learn more about how to run a successful business, I reached out to the community for answers. I discovered allies, like The Women’s Business Development Center that provides workshops, business counseling, networking and access to knowledge that empowered me. No matter where you are in business, you have to keep learning and growing to persevere. Even the largest of boulders look small in the rearview mirror once you have overcome them.

In 1999, I was a young sailor in the U.S. Navy when Hurricane Floyd blew into Virginia where I was stationed and hurled me off a balcony that was just 1-story up. That gust changed my physical world forever. But I had something that storm could not steal from me: perseverance—a willingness to overcome challenges and a commitment to succeed. There are blockades up for each of us, but there are also ways around them, over them and through them if you refuse to accept failure as an option.

My military training has always helped me to stay “mission focused” with a commitment to excellence. The Navy also gave me a strong work ethic and the ability to work under pressure. It taught me to put an emphasis on teamwork and gave me the leadership skills to build a great business. I seek out opportunities to not only learn and grow, but also to become involved in communities of knowledge, such as The Bunker, the nation’s first veterans incubator for small businesses.

Although being a woman- and service- disabled veteran-owned business can bring advantages over many competitors, I still have to earn each and every opportunity. We have been successful at this by building relationships with our customers and earning their trust by performing projects on time, on budget, and with the quality and safety expected. In addition, just as importantly, we bring determination, knowledge and truckloads of professionals who gladly climb all kinds of ladders for me.