Category Archives: Blog

Covid 19 Friendly Contracting
Concrete Repair – A Social Distancing Compliant Service
Annie Baeten

The last several months have brought many surprises and unexpected challenges to us all. I thought one delightful surprise was worth noting to anyone considering entering the Concrete Raising Business with HMI equipment and material. .

As the Marketing Director of HMI I also handle marketing and promotion for RaiseRite Concrete Lifting. RaiseRite is the contracting subsidiary of HMI which serves a market within 90 miles from HMI’s headquarters in Manitowoc WI. Upon my return from World of Concrete in February I am always pressured to build a backlog of work for RaiseRite for the season start once weather improves in Wisconsin. Of course 20



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BILL – A YEAR LATER – GRAPPLING WITH THE VIRUS
Paul DelFino

PREFACE: This Blog is a continuation of “THE LIFE Of BILL” series. Among the most popular blogs in HMI’ history, Bill was first introduced in the February 2019 HMI blog publication. Readers are encouraged to read the initial blog and also the story of; “HOW BILL LEVERED BAD WEATHER TO DOUBLE HIS BUSINESS” in April 2019 to gain history and context about the character and his progression in the polyurethane lifting business. First envisioned and created as a method to articulate an average day of someone in the trade, Bill has evolved to an almost real relatable friend to many customers who reference him with a smile when speaking with HMI personnel.

THE END OF 2019
Bil


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World Of Concrete 2020 Recap - ConExpo-Con/Agg Primer

Annie Baeten

 

On January 3rd I posted a bold promise of big plans for what HMI had in store for World of Concrete in Las Vegas in February. I am delighted to share that the crowds, customer feedback and new attendee feedback suggests HMI delivered.

WORLD OF CONCRETE 2020 - At the show HMI introduced its. newest product offering, FILLFOAM. (Exclusively provided by its sister company FILLRITE TECHNOLOGIES. www.fillritetechnologies.com) The characteristics of this new technology were demonstrated live, as this highly flowable filling agent was pumped around a pole to fill a bucket at the show to the amazement of booth visitors.  The FILLFOAM demonstration was incorporated into the tr

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TRADE SHOW SEASON COUNTDOWN

“31 Days until Another WOC Spectacular”

“67 Days until CONEXPO, only comes around every 3 years!”

Annie Baeten
 

The NEW YEAR, means the HMI marketing department is just shifting into top gear! We are only 31 days away from World of Concrete 2020 in Las Vegas.

Tradition has HMI not only presenting but demoing our latest innovation. Planning, coordinating, and preparing for a 4 day show with nearly 100 live demonstrations takes a bit of work. And 2020 promises to be bigger, better and more exciting than ever before. We will feature a BRAND NEW PRODUCT:

-              [icon pic="cogs"] NEW EQUIPMENT that can be easily installed into your current van, truck or trailer.

-          


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SETTING POSTS & POLES WITH POLY

Adding to the Long List of Applications of your HMI Poly System

Jen Mazur

 

The list of applications using foam grows every today. Setting Posts and Poles and reinforcing failing posts and utility poles is another way HMI customers have levered their equipment in increased their ROI.

There are many ways to set fence posts.  Many include mixing small batches of cement and extensive bracing to hold everything in place while allowing the cement to cure.  Some methods include premixing cement, others involve dry mixing directly into the post hole.  Both commonly result in a lot of time, effort and inconstant mixes that could fail and allow for movement.

Now imagine holding a post level for less th

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HOW AM I DOING? WHAT AM I GOING TO DO IN 2020?

Paul DelFino

 

 

Several weeks back one of HMI’s customers contacted me and asked me to look critically at his business. After successive years of growth he had two simple questions: How am I doing? What else should I be doing?

After being tickled by his request (everyone likes to be asked for their opinion) I had him send down financials, management reports, sales and estimating reports and more. He was taking the time to formally budget for 2020 and using the discipline to CRITICALLY EVALUATE and PLAN.

BUDGETING

Over time I have remained in continuous awe of the fact that over 50% of the small business’s I evaluate, under $5m in sales, have no budget. Entrepreneurs still tell me

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HMI FOAMS vs. HURRICANE DORIAN
An Update on the Repair Featured In My May 2018 Sea Wall Blog
Paul DelFino

In May 2018 I/HMI published a blog discussing the utilization of HMI foams for Sea Wall repair(Blog Link: SEAWALL REPAIR ) In this blog I embedded a photo of myself applying HMI soil stabilizer to a traditional wash out area following hurricanes. Given events over the past month I thought it appropriate to provide an update following a recent visit by Hurricane Dorian.

 

THE PROBLEM - The area where my dock ramp meets land enjoys a transition from pavers to a wood ramp. The doc ramp stingers interface with the coquina stone sea wall with short piles, The south side had historically taken the worst beating as south west winds drive



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BUSINESS START UP – TIMING?

A discussion of considerations as to when to start a new concrete repair business.

Paul DelFino

 

All businesses have cycles. Some are related to:  markets, weather, economy in general and even a paradigm of tradition.

All reports indicate the current economic conditions have positively buoyed the concrete raising and leveling business in 2019. Forecasts, due to economic indicators, suggest equal or better for 2020. While thinking this through and listening to the stories of entrepreneurs who started their business in 2019, I was intrigued with the fact that the balloon of startups still sits in Qtr. 1. Feedback from these individuals motivated me to question the conventional thinking of timing.

CONVENTIO

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Experts Are Now Focusing On “The Customer Experience” To Maximize Profits!”

Paul DelFino

 

Focusing on the customer experience is not a new concept to graduates of the two day HMI “Discovery & Training Seminar.”  For nearly 10 years the concept of building a customer tunnel has been pounded into participants. Recently the concept, under a new name “Customer Experience” is getting very high attention in the business press and with experts of focusing on profit making.

WHY NOW

We all know it costs a lot of money to get a lead. Your management of every potential lead to increase the probability of a closed sale can be one of the most important levers of your profitability. The maybe sale of a prospect has costs (expense

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DO YOU KNOW YOUR NUMBERS?

CAN YOU ANSWER THESE QUESTIONS?

Paul DelFino

 

After decades of evaluating small businesses I have come to the conclusion that I can judge the success potential in one brief interview with the owner/entrepreneur. It comes down to one overriding question; does he or she know their numbers?

There is a big difference between knowing how to successfully raise and level concrete or stabilizing an environment with Deep Foamjection and successfully running a business. When you raise concrete you have measurable goals and metrics. You’re trying to level, pitch, or stabilize. Each of these has a numeric goal of height, angle or soil density/compressive strength. With polyurethane you are judging which foam based on P

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“MOVING BEYOND RESIDENTIAL”

Increasing the Percentage of Commercial & Governmental Work in Your Business
Paul DelFino
You can view the eyes open super wide and the minds calculating when HMI ownership describes larger commercial and governmental jobs at monthly Discovery & Training Seminars. The mention of jobs using hundreds of thousands of pounds of material has some attendees nearly salivating. When I mention perceived value pricing in these forums, where you are charging for a larger percentage of the savings you create for the customer and not by the square foot, the excitement builds. The attendees start doing searches for their new boat or second home.
The large commercial and governmental projects described and opportuni


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A Sequel to “A Day in The Life Of Bill” Blog of February 5, 2019

(Reading “A Day in the Life of Bill” in Advance Of Reading This Blog is Recommended for Understanding of History”)

Paul DelFino

Authors Note – “A Day in The Life of Bill” has turned out to be one of the most popular Blogs in the history of HMI postings. This is measured by views on our WEB SITE and measurement of the amount of time viewers spend on each page reading it. (Your website has this information as well if you check you’re Google Analytics). We thought it would be fun and informative to continue the Bill saga since he has evolved to an “icon poster child.” Enjoy

SPRING 2019

Bill and his family are sitting around the kitchen table having a mini

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"A Chronological Picture of the Average Day of a Polyurethane Concrete Lifting Contractor”

Paul J. DelFino

Reaching out to HMI, many aspiring entrepreneurs investigating entry into Polyurethane Concrete Lifting & Leveling Industry ask the magic question – “what is an average day like in the business?”

I thought it would be informative and fun to create a fictional contractor and share his average day with you.

MEET BILL   - Prior to contacting HMI in January 2018, Bill had been a tech support specialist at a major corporation.   He had accidentally fallen into the tech world in the mid-1980s even though he enjoyed a marketing and sales background. With 25 years in and the kids married and on their own; he aspired to: be his

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“MADE BY CONTRACTORS FOR CONTRACTORS”

“THE GENESIS & DEFENSE OF OUR MANTRA”

Jen Mazur

 

Have you ever called your supplier for help and know instinctively that the person giving you advice on the phone is reading a script and obviously never used the product you need help with? Or when operating a piece of equipment – thinking out loud – “the person who designed this obviously never did this work!" HMI is committed to insure that no customer will have that experience with our concrete lifting products or our team.

THE GENESIS OF THE CULTURE

Over 43 years ago Ernie Cvetezar was operating “Raiserite Concrete Lifting” in Manitowoc, WI. He was dissatisfied with his mechanical mudpump. Over the winter season, decades a

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HMI NOW OFFERS SPECIAL DEEP FOAMJECTION TRAINING FOR CUSTOMERS

Jen Mazur

On October 21, 2018 over 30 HMI contractor customers “trekked back home” to HMI’ headquarters in Manitowoc, WI. for the first Special Deep Foamjection Training program.

The one day program was packed with:

Hands on Demonstrations
Case Study Reviews
Equipment Overviews
& MORE

Participant reviews exceeded those of the acclaimed HMI two day “Discovery & Training Program” as existing polyurethane customers learned new ways to lever the power of their rigs to “make more money.”

THE HISTORY

Injecting polyurethane foam, at various depths, in areas where soil problems exist is not new. The process has been deployed for decades but protected by pat




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TALKING FOR $s

TALKING FOR $s

Communication skills – a key to successful entrepreneurial contracting!

Several years ago I was presenting at an industry association convention about marketing trends. During the traditional Q&A part of the program I was asked a broad question.  The gentlemen who was handed the microphone was an obvious veteran of contracting wars as he; had more grey hair than I and a face that signaled experience with winning and losing. I recall he rose slowly and not without some drama. His James Earl Jones voice caught me off guard with a broad yet direct question. He asked for my opinion on the #1 skill that was trainable and teachable at any life stage that would make him and his family a greater success in their business?

I r

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DEFINING VALUE

DEFINING VALUE
What Is In The Price Per Pound?
Paul DelFino

Polyurethane concrete lifting and leveling is growing. HMI has taken the industry to a new level ever since it introduced its first trailer system that made polyurethane concrete lifting viable as a highly profitable residential service a decade ago.  (Concrete Construction Magazine Article>>)
As with any industry the cycles of maturity and growth allow for the introduction of new players. Business people seek new segments to enter and HMI helped create one for the Spray Foam Industry. On one side many spray foam contractors could now use their equipment to provide a new service at a higher margin by just changing the foam and preferably attaching a new gun. On the other sid



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WHO ARE THE EXPERTS? & WHO ANSWERS THE QUESTIONS AND HOW?

 

Paul DelFino

 

ANXIETY

Every so often I get frustrated!  Occasionally angry! What is the root cause of all this anxiety? The internet! More specifically the amount of misinformation that is often presented on: web sites, blogs, and specifically forums. Not to worry, I am not fixated on the problem and keep it all in perspective considering the unbelievable availability of data that we all enjoy daily. But – I often wonder how people really seeking help about concrete lifting sift thru the cyber infinity of noise to find the truth.

THE EXPERTS

In support of HMI I recently scoured the net to see if I could learn who a consumer or a concrete repair specialist would

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