Weaver believes that investing in the design/sales team is the
best way to market the firm, and she is currently offering a $5,000
bonus to any of her designers who become certified. The bonus will
be paid out in $1,000 increments over a five-year period as long as
the designer is employed by Distinctive Designs. The company shares
in the cost of the certification process, as well.
Earning a salary and a percentage of the gross profits further motivates Distinctive Designs employees. They can also take advantage of a retirement plan, and health and disability insurance which is offered.
Weaver and her partner have also gotten serious about their bottom line. Budgeting, projecting figures and communicating their fiscal goals to staff have helped increase profits for the company. Weaver is proud that her staff understands the business side of things each is able to quote company statistics such as gross profit and monthly sales figures.
The company also began taking two percent of the total revenues every week and putting it aside in an account. They use the money which is now a five percent account for taxes, staff retirement, matching funds and other needs. Weaver also prides herself that Distinctive Designs always takes advantage of vendor discounts for prepayment of bills, and makes deals with the vendors they work with most.
Not surprisingly, gross profits at Distinctive Designs have increased nine percentage points since implementing this plan, with Weaver and her staff attributing it to two basic things working harder and smarter.
LOCATION: Springfield, IL
PRINCIPALS: Darlene Weaver, CKD, CBD, ASID, president/co-owner; Curt Mavis, CKD, CBD, ASID, co-owner; Dave Robinson, designer; Kelli Shamhart, designer; Katie Hahn, designer; Brandy Lantis, designer; William Skeens, CKD, designer.
SHOWROOMS: One, 3,200 sq. ft.
HOURS OF OPERATION: Mon., 10-6; Tues.-Thurs., 9-6; Fri., 9-4; Sat., 9-1
EMPLOYEES: 8 full-time, 1 part-time
MAJOR PRODUCT LINES: Wood-Mode, Kitchen Craft, KraftMaid, DuPont Corian, Avonite, Wilsonart, Formica, Granite, Nevamar.
DESIGN SOFTWARE: CADKIT, 20-20
SPECIALTIES: Personalizing the job by getting to know the customer and creating solutions that fit individual lifestyles.
BUSINESS PHILOSOPHY: "We want to create win-win situationswhere the customer and the company wins. We want to create an environment and culture in our company so that everyone who works here will give a lot and get a lot."