Archive for February, 2009

Hopefully this party won’t end for a while yet!

Saturday, February 28th, 2009

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Larry Louwagie, one of our Regional Business Developers, received this email from Jason Cramer, one of our best franchisees in Minneapolis:

"I’m doing great.

Buying at numbers that are beyond ridiculous.

Hopefully this party won’t end for a while yet. "

 

Come Join Us in Austin for the Texas Legislative Summit

Wednesday, February 25th, 2009

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The Texas Legislative Summit will be held in Austin, Texas on March 3 – 4.

There are several key issues on the legislative agenda that affect our industry. At this meeting, you will learn how to meet and work with legislators. There will be a training held by lobbyists on how to have an impact.

Then, on Wednesday, we will hear an overview for the state, followed by a legislative panel and meetings with Texas legislators.

Location: Doubletree-Austin, 303 W 15th St, Austin, TX 78701 (512) 478-7000
Here is a general agenda:

Tuesday, March 3rd
3:00 – 5:00 PM Legislative introduction / initial training session
Dinner – on your own
7:00 – 9:00 PM Legislator Visit training – How to be an advocate – Meeting Matches

Wednesday March 4th
8:30 AM Issue overview for state & discussion
9:30 AM break
10:00 AM Legislator Panel
15 Panel intros…intro comments 2-5 minutes.
10-15 min. Introduction of Members (overview by demographics)
5 min transition – previous legislation – to why we are here now…
20 min – 10 minutes each Legislator – highlight their legislation
Q&A on Concerns – discussion.
11:30 AM Certificates to legislators – mix and mingle time…
1:00 PM Post meeting follow up.

Scheduling Hill meetings:
3:00 PM Meeting with Senator Corona – his office with key leaders.
 

HVA Ranks 41 in Franchise Business Review Top 50

Saturday, February 21st, 2009

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Franchise Business Review has published its Top 50 Franchise Satisfaction Awards for 2009 and once again HomeVestors is among the best franchises, placing 41 in the Large Franchise Class. The survey measures franchisee satisfaction of more than 400 franchises.

The ranking is determined by Franchise Business Review after surveying franchisees of more than 400 franchise companies. This is the second year Franchise Business Review separated the list into categories based on size. The Large Franchise Class is for franchises with more than 200 franchise units.

This ranking is special to us because it is based on surveys completed by our franchisees with no involvement by the corporate office. It is a pure satisfaction survey. To rank in the top 50 for a fourth year in a row, especially considering all we have been through is a tribute to our franchisees, and our corporate staff.

Ken and I are appreciative for the franchisees for their faith and support. This survey is important to us, because our goal is to build a culture in the company promoting service to the franchisee.

They Still Serve Peanuts

Monday, February 9th, 2009

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Last Saturday, for the first time in years, I had the opportunity to fly Southwest Airlines. I was surprised – they still serve peanuts!

Over the last few years, I have experienced the degeneration of service of the major airlines. You are lucky to get a soft drink on most flights. Want a snack – it will cost you more. But the biggest loss has been the service. Rarely do you get a smile from the flight attendants (I guess that is more politically correct than steward or stewardess).

In the past, I had the opportunity to fly Southwest many times. When I was state president of the Texas Jaycees years ago, I flew so much with Southwest I was on first name basis with many of the flight attendants. I did not like not having a seat assignment, and the feeling they load you like cattle. But, I did like the feeling you received from everyone at Southwest. They created a culture of "love". They loved their jobs. They loved having you as their customer. As a customer, you felt like they actually liked serving you.

I wondered how they created such a culture, until one day I happened to be on a flight to El Paso with Herb Kelleher. Herb at the time was president of Southwest Airlines. He was not sitting in first class (he couldn’t since there is no first class). After the flight was in the air, he did a surprising thing. He took off his jacket, and joined the attendants serving drinks. And it appeared he had fun doing it!

That is what I remembered about Southwest. Everyone seemed to have fun! You never knew what to expect when they made their seat belt announcements.

I was surprised to see much of that culture remains. Two flight attendants came down the aisle handing out peanuts and appeared to be happy. The flight was very short – from Dallas to Houston – and most other airlines wouldn’t even serve drinks. They not only served drinks, but came back through to see if you wanted a refill. The pilot actually stood at the door as we left thanking us for flying, and he sounded like he really meant it.

Maybe this culture explains why Southwest is the only airline that has been making money recently.

How do we create this culture at HVA? In your franchise? And at corporate?

We do appreciate you as our customer! Have we told you that recently?