Point of View Archive

  • Our New COO is a Heavy(weight) Hitter

    I never imagined that solving a problem as big as we were tackling would be so challenging and at the same time so rewarding. Every time we faced a wall, we broke it down. Every time we failed, we were inspired to learn why and to do better. From the […]

  • This holiday season, is it (really) the end of retail as we know it?

    When it comes to the demise of retail shopping, it pays to keep in mind that oft-quoted Mark Twain quip: “Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” Ever since brown boxes with Amazon’s smiling logo started showing up at doors roughly 20 years ago, pundits have predicted that online shopping […]

  • Raising compassionate kids can start with a simple sock

    I am one of the lucky ones. I was raised in a loving household and in turn, am able to create the same for my kids with my wife Kelly. I have always had a home to go to, a purpose in life in which I pursue as well as […]

  • Help others: Business goals that create A better world

    The most transformational businesses are driven by curiosity, passion and the promise of creating a better world.  They are built around seeing a problem that needs fixing or a pain for people and then doing everything possible to fix that problem. In essence, the best businesses are built around helping the most […]

  • BuildDirect and Robert Banks featured on Mashable

    While I was on vacation last week, Mashable carried a story in its business section which included BuildDirect’s co-founder, Robert Banks. In the article, Mashable points to the continued debate for CEO’s and Founders of using social media and video to engage direct conversations with customers.  The debate centers on the question of […]

  • A little better every day really adds up

    I found out a long time ago that if you keep improving a little every day, eventually those little changes add up to make big changes. It is why having a passion for getting better every day is one of our core values.

  • Clarke and Dawe: Lending merry-go-round

    Funny if it weren’t so true!

  • Why Twitter is a must for business

    I just saw this on post on Twitter that points out how fast business is changing. Without speaking for @wireddaniel, I believe the reason it makes him feel better is exactly why I feel better about buying from a company who engages on Twitter. (Or Facebook, etc.) That is: There is an […]

  • Google job experiment

    What an incredibly creative way to get a job. Shows what is possible with a little imagination and thinking outside the box. This is also the thing I love about business today. The old way of doing things is breaking down so quicky that sometimes it only takes a little […]

  • Cool interactive map on population growth

    Amazing interactive map of population growth and the amount of CO2 being emitted by people world wide. Watch the bottom right hand corner. Great way of presenting the data! Check it out here:

  • Design guru Debbie Travis blogs about BuildDirect

    I love this blog post from Debbie Travis in that it tells a story of how the building industry is changing. As customers see that they can get better value AND service, word spreads. By blowing away customers expectations, what starts as a drip, quickly becomes a stream. We started […]

  • What my brother taught me

    I wanted to share a letter that I recently received from a good friend who moved back to Australia a number of years ago. I thought I would share it for two reasons. 1) It is very important to me, and 2)  there is a good lesson in it about what […]

  • Time lapse video of Vancouver

    I came across this time lapse video of Vancouver yesterday. The video does a fantastic job of showcasing Vancouver with the 2010 Olympics right around the corner.

  • Becoming the best

    I have been thinking about the world class athletes coming to compete in Vancouver for the 2010 Olympics. It is going to be a great time in the city celebrating the best of the best in sport. I have also been thinking about what it takes to be the best. […]

  • Bringing out the best in people

    You know those moments when you hear something so compelling, it just sticks with you. Well, about two months ago at a Growth conference, I had one of those moments, and I have been thinking about it since. The moment I am talking about is while listening to a speaker […]

  • A crisis is a terrible thing to waste

    At the Gazelles growth conference last week, I had the opportunity to see Jim Collins speak. One of the things I liked most about his speech, is the depth of research that he has done to examine what makes companies truly great. Jim has made a life study out of the differences between […]

  • Why we don’t trust the new

    Each day we receive feedback from customers rating their experience with BuildDirect on 3 different criteria. 1) Customer Service  2) Product quality  3) Delivery service.  We treat this feedback as crucial to our business. Even though it hurts when the feedback is negative,  it uncovers areas that we improve upon. We […]

  • Never give in

    NEVER GIVE IN!  Be willing to change tactics, but never give up on your core purpose. Be willing to kill failed business ideas, even shutter big operations you’ve been in for a long time, but never give up on the idea of building a great company. Be willing to evolve […]

  • My trip to Turkey

    I’m just back home from Turkey, where my wife and I just finished an amazing trip. We started in Istanbul, the only city in the world that sits on two continents. (European and Asia) Because of its importance to trade routes, Istanbul has a long history, being the capital city […]

  • A powerful idea I learned from Zappos

    I was fortunate enough to get a tour of Zappos months ago. (Prior to the sale to Amazon) There has been a great deal of media discussion on the Zappos values and their focus on customer service that drove their business to grow very quickly to almost a billion dollars in revenue.  Most of […]

  • The power of forum

    I spent the day yesterday with a number of my forum members from the Young President’s Organization (YPO).  They continue to make such a profound impact on me and my business.  I have been a member for about 6 years and I still can’t believe how much I learn and grow from this group of […]

  • 5 things you must know about laminate flooring

    Robert Banks, my friend and co-founder of BuildDirect does a great job in this video of explaining the things you must know before purchasing laminate flooring. As a kid, Rob did a little acting and although I tease him about being a “bit part actor”,  he is doing fantastic work on our videos. See more […]

  • My first Bar Camp

    I attended my first Bar Camp Event yesterday. For those unfamiliar, Bar Camps have nothing to do with drinking or bars. (Although there was a little time prior to the event)  The bar camp is a conference that is an open, participatory workshop-event, where the content is provided by participants. The Bar Camp that I […]

  • The secret of possibility thinking

    In a construction market as difficult as the current market, it is easy to either 1) wait until the market gets better, or worse 2) lose hope. Most of  my peers say they are working harder, and seeing less as a result of their efforts.  What makes matters worse is that despite calls of “green […]

  • Ethical companies are stronger and last longer

  • We’re a product of the challenges we face in life – John Chambers

    I love this interview with John Chambers, Chairman and CEO of Cisco systems. I think it is a timely and relevant interview for what many business leaders (especially in the construction sector) may be facing today.  Many business models that worked perfectly for years, have changed almost overnight creating both chaos and […]

  • Photo of Vancouver from 1961

    I found this photo in an old magazine. With the Olympics fast approaching, it is interesting to see how much Vancouver has changed since 1961. Although the entire city has changed substantially, I found Granville Island and False Creek  particularly interesting.

  • Innovative way to “advertise”

    I wanted to share the video below because I thought it shows what is possible by allowing users to contribute content and engage with a brand.  Century 21 created a “contest” where others could unleash their creativity and talents. My feelings are that they achieved two main objectives by using this […]

  • One way to remove housing inventory

    Wow!!!  This video is shocking! When banks would rather destroy new homes than repair and sell them, you know how bad it is in certain regions of California. The only good news that I can draw from this is that if you’re a contrarian investor like me, when you see reports like […]

  • What ever happened to building trust, credibility, likeability, relevance?

    The beauty in trust, credibility, likability and relevance is that because so few companies really practice it. Companies that do rise above the noise and get noticed. They create engaged fans of the business and those fans help the business grow faster by telling other people.