Articles by Hank Darlington

Times are changing for the bath and kitchen industry

How a free enterprise system affects the heavy hitters in our industry.

It’s certainly no secret that I’ve been active in this great industry for a number of years, and over those years I’ve seen tremendous changes.

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Build ‘soul’ in your showroom

Don’t become just another brick-and-mortar showroom.

Aren’t you just worn out hearing brick-and-mortar showrooms are giving way to the Internet? I know I am! First, I don’t believe it. Second, I know there are a number of things you can do to prevent it from happening.

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The numbers game

Properly used data can be a powerful management tool.

I’ve always been a numbers kind of guy! I liked math when I was in school and learned very early on how powerful numbers can be in helping run a business. The more ways you can analyze your business, the more successful your business will be. STOP! Don’t move onto the next article just because numbers aren’t your thing. At least give me an opportunity to explain why I strongly believe you should incorporate numbers into the management of your showroom.

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A good employee training program is essential to your success

Part of the puzzle.

I probably shouldn’t admit this, but I’m writing this article on a ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean at the tail-end of a 30-day cruise through the Mediterranean Sea, across the Atlantic, through the Caribbean and ending in Miami.

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The private-label debate

Is this increasing industry trend good for your business?

I doubt any of you are surprised that the number of private-label products showing up in the marketplace is rapidly growing. Many of you are starting to show and sell your very own private-labeled faucets, bath accessories and other popular showroom sell items.

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Strategic adjustments can make your showroom more profitable

The 2% windfall.

I just finished reading the synopsis of a book entitled “The 1% Windfall” by Rafi Mohammed. I strongly recommend you read it. It reminded me once again that the average gross margin on sales for plumbing wholesaler showrooms is lower than it should be.  

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Don’t worry, be happy

Do you have a positive outlook on life?

I just returned home from riding and working in a cross-country bicycle event. In 2009, I rode from Los Angeles to Boston (3,415 miles). 

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Fixtures Living trailblazes a revolutionary showroom business model

San Diego-based showroom Fixtures Living changes name to PIRCH.

When my wife, Carol, and I started The Plumbery some 30 years ago we built a business plan that was not dissimilar to what I’m about to describe.

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Marketing and training help PACE Supply’s Premier Bath and Kitchen thrive

PACE Supply exhibits success at its best.
In 1998 PACE Supply President Ted Green and his team made the important decision to get into the showroom business.
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How social media can grow your business

It’s time to connect.

Please don’t tell my kids Dad’s written an article on social media! They wouldn’t believe you. I’m part of that non-techie generation. 

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Image Galleries

BNP Media's Plumbing Group Visits Grundfos North American Headquarters

BNP Media’s Plumbing Group, comprised of the Plumbing & Mechanical, Supply House Times, PM Engineer (pme) and Reeves Journal brands, recently visited Grundfos’ new North American headquarters building in the western Chicago suburb of Downers Grove, Ill.

8/26/14 1:00 pm EST

Free Webinar: Low Temperature Heat Emitter Options in Hydronic Systems

With proper design, you can create systems that require supply water temperatures no higher than 120° F under design load conditions.

Supply House Times


2014 January

SHT's packed January issue incdues the cover story: M&L Supply is rich in heritage and customer service; features:  Industry optimism continues to rise heading into the 2015 AHR Expo, and Distributors discuss top industry issues: Part 2; and so much more!


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2015 National Plumbing & HVAC Estimator

Every plumbing and HVAC estimator can use the cost estimates in this practical manual!

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