Belgard University??

Discussion in 'Hardscaping' started by JimmyStew, Feb 2, 2009.

  1. JimmyStew

    JimmyStew LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 367

    Hey guys. Just got a flyer about a Belgard University class that will be held not to far from me, but the info is quite vague. Anyone been to one of these? What are they all about? Good info or just a lavish sales pitch?
  2. DVS Hardscaper

    DVS Hardscaper LawnSite Fanatic
    Messages: 6,623

    can't beat their Vander Kooi seminars. They're a MUST attend for anyone serious about the industry.
  3. Rex Mann

    Rex Mann LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 621

  4. Ground Effects NH

    Ground Effects NH LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 601

    I attended a couple classes last winter, (NCMA, ICPI, and VERSA-LOK, to name a few) Belgard University was the last. All in all they covered the same material as the other class but in their own words. As for your question, yes I enjoyed it. I learned a few new things and meet a group of guys that I am still friends with today because of the show. I hope to attend this yearÂ’s seminar.:waving:
  5. JimmyStew

    JimmyStew LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 367

    I called up to register yesterday and asked about it. The woman I spoke to said it would cover new products, some basic install info, marketing stuff, etc. Oh, and free lunch! If it turns out to be nothing special, then I haven't lost anything, but hopefully, I can learn a few new things.
  6. Rex Mann

    Rex Mann LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 621

    I went to our local Belgard U. today. Kinda of a what can
    Belgard do for the contractor. Also, introduced all the new products for

    VanderKooi was himself. If you have seen him in the past ut is the same.
    Out of 60 attendees, less than half were contractors. I learned a few things about the new wall system, Belair and somethings from the Keystone guy.
    It is a good networking opportunity.

    They said there is a part 2 in March of this year.



  7. JimmyStew

    JimmyStew LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 367

    Just an update for anyone thinking about attending one of these. It was basically an intro/overview of some basic sales & marketing techniques, a very light overview of installation info (taken from ICPI and a waste of time if you've ever installed pavers before) and then a description of the Belgard line including their new products from last year and this season. They finished it off with a sales pitch for their ION Network, which seems like a good program, although the cost would definitely outway the benefit in my small market.

    I wasn't real happy with the timing of the day. I drove 2 hours and pulled into the lot at 8 but it started 45 minutes late "to let others trickle in" and our 5 minute coffee break lasted 20. Plus the guy presenting told us he was going to wrap things up at 2 because "he had a plane to catch". Nothing like telling me I'm not important!

    All in all, it was worth the trip, although I likely would not attend again. They are considering changing the format for future presentations so it may be better in the future.
  8. Paver Gangster

    Paver Gangster LawnSite Member
    Messages: 144

    Not sure which one in the NE you attended, but in my area, the belgard u here was offering ICPI, NCMA and architects classes, plus the marketing seminar you were talking about.
  9. nhpatriot

    nhpatriot LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    Attended the program here in NH, and made some good connections. Also gleaned bits and pieces of useful information from the presentation. Most time seminars/classes are tons of stuff you already know, and a few things you don't. I would say worth it though, and the Belgard Ion program is AWESOME, I am signed up with it, and would recommend it to anyone looking to grow their business.
  10. Summit L & D

    Summit L & D LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 269

    Charles Vander Kooi was worth the trip. He put things into usable terms.

    I did take issue with his stance on running a business off of loans and not cash. He made a great to-do about slimming your business down and running a very efficient operation. I understand that you are paying interest to someone all the time....albeit yourself or the bank. But the difference is I can allow a skipped "interest" payment to myself (do to bad economy, project cost overrun, etc.), but the bank will not offer me that luxury.

    To me it makes better sense to run a business off of cash, rather than have a business that is totally tied up in paper at the bank. Thoughts?

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