As Las Vegas remains a pandemic hot spot, the International Pool | Spa | Patio Expo is going virtual for 2020. Pool professionals have mixed feelings: While they understand the need to avoid large crowds, they say they’ll miss connecting with fellow dealers and manufacturers.
As the industry does its best to embrace the future, a virtual expo allows attendance at a larger number of seminars for personal and business development. Here’s a mock-up webinar schedule to help you get the most out of this year’s virtual event.
Day 1: Wednesday, November 11
10-11:15 a.m. EST (Live) Power Panel: Retail
Presented by Matt Gohlke, president at Gohlke Pools; Mallory Bjekich-Wachowski, retail operations manager at DesRochers Backyard Pools and Spas; Jane Merritt, owner at Anchor Pools & Spas Inc.
Designed especially for pool, spa and backyard retailers, this live Power Panel will bring together the best forward-thinking minds in the industry. During this fast-paced, interactive session, ask questions and hear real solutions to today’s toughest issues, including:
How has your year been?
How was your area impacted?
Did you ever close your retail store?
Did you do anything differently (free delivery/curbside service etc.)?
What software do you use?
What KPIs (if any) do you use?
How do you hire your retail store staff? Where do you find them?
What is your training process?
Do they have a procedural manual? Checklists?
Plus more in marketing, inventory management, competition and the future of retail.
On Demand Winning Customer Satisfaction — How to Win Your Clients’ Hearts, Minds and Wallets*
Presented by Brett Abbott, strategic and tactical marketing systems, Pool Builders
This session will show you how to create a culture within your company that encourages all employees to maximize customer satisfaction without “giving away the farm.” It includes specific tips on:
Dealing with angry customers
Dealing with negative reviews
Getting employees to take ownership of problems
Becoming memorable in the minds of your clients
“I think virtual is the best choice. I know in our corner of the world we’re having a huge spike, and if they had it in person, I probably would not go anyway.”
Audra Johnson Partner, Johnson’s Pools & Spas Owego, New York
On Demand Cash Flow and Cash Flow Budgeting*
Presented by Tom Grandy, president at Grandy & Associates
This session walks the contractor through the process of developing a month-by-month, department-by-department cash flow budget. During this session, we will also discuss payables, receivables and a formal collection policy. Numerous cash flow tips will be covered, including a discussion on the benefits, and potential pitfalls, of having a line of credit.
How to create a month-by-month, department-by-department, cash flow budget to project future cash flow needs
Find out if one department is subsidizing another department
How a formal collections policy will help ensure improved cash flow
The pros and cons of a line of credit
On Demand Managing Effectively Through Effective Leadership*
Presented by Mario Rossetti, president at Rossetti Enterprises, LLC
Management may be the most misunderstood sector in the company structure. It seems as if every year there is a new management style promoted to business owners. This seminar cuts through the hype and centers on the key to great management: Leadership.
Prepare to become a successful manager
Discover what leadership is really all about
Uncover the best attributes of the successful manager
Determine how to measure success in management
4–5 p.m. EST (Live) Master Pools Guild Make a Splash Reception
Presented by Master Pools Guild
Join your fellow attendees and virtually toast to a successful Day 1. Reunite with old friends, make a new connection or two and get to know the Master Pools Guild. We’ll have fun conversation and a few games with great prizes. Everyone is invited as we make a splash and make history uniting participants in the first virtual happy hour hosted at the International Pool | Spa | Patio Expo
Day 2: Thursday, November 12
10–11:15 a.m. EST (Live) Power Panel: Builder
Presented by Steve Barnes, director of science and compliance at AquaStar Pool Products; Scott Cohen, president at The Green Scene; Charlie Claffey, president/CEO at Claffey Pools; Buzz Ghiz, self-employed
During this fast-paced, interactive session, you will have the opportunity to ask questions and hear the panel’s solutions to today’s toughest issues. Bring your entire team to really strengthen your operation.
On Demand Adding Leak Detection to Your Services*
Presented by Darren Merlob, owner at LeakTronics
This session will discuss how to provide complete leak-detection services to your customer without having to refer them to a third party.
You’ll learn how to:
Perform a thorough non-invasive leak detection
Turn leak detections into repair bids
Use non-invasive leak detection equipment
Use new technology to make leak detection easier
On Demand Water Balance Basics — The LSI is Your Friend*
Presented by Wayne Ivusich, BA, MS, CPO, CPI, PHTA CPO instructor; manager of education and technical services at Taylor Technologies, Inc.
An interactive seminar discussing the parameters of water balance and how they interrelate, and how maintaining proper water balance can increase your profit margins. The class will troubleshoot specific water-balance scenarios as they relate to unusual conditions and circumstances.
Improve understanding of water balance parameters with a systematic presentation/review
Evaluate the relationship between these parameters
Learn to teach and review the recommended guidelines for pool/spa water balance parameters
Initiate group problem-solving activities.
On Demand Outdoor Living: How to Create Beautiful and Comfortable Outdoor Rooms** | D423 0.1 IACET CEUs
Presented by Kate Wiseman, MLA, principal landscape designer at Sage Outdoor Designs, GENESIS design faculty advisor
What does it take to design a beautiful and comfortable outdoor room? We will discuss these elements with plenty of designer tips and tricks to get your clients living alfresco. Discussion on methods and practices will help you determine the layout and location of site improvements, tie outdoor living spaces with water elements, and learn aesthetics and style for outdoor living. We will also discuss up-and-coming trends in outdoor living.
Define a design method for comfortable and beautiful outdoor living spaces
Discuss outdoor living trends and common elements of outdoor rooms
Better integrate outdoor living spaces with onsite water elements
Apply these concepts to an outdoor living case study
“We were very disappointed to hear of the decision to make the conference virtual this year. The past several years, we have attended and placed several thousands of dollars worth of orders with various companies. Sometimes a product is better received when seen in person versus a static picture in an email. We are also missing out on a ton of educational and networking opportunities. I know courses will be available online, but it is from the interactions in classes between peers that I have learned the most. While I can understand the decision not to have the event, our industry would have been better served to have the event while taking proper precautions and allowing participants who do not feel comfortable not to attend instead of forcing that decision on everyone.”
Ken Thompson Owner, Clarity Pool & Patio Auburn, Indiana
Day 3: Friday, November 13
10–11:15 a.m. EST (Live) Power Panel: Service
Presented by Javier Payan, president and CEO at Payan Pools; Julie Kazdin Boucher, vice president and partner at Kazdin Pools; Steve DeCook, owner at Ekonomy Pool Service; Dan Lenz, vice president at All Seasons Pools & Spas, Inc.; Mitch Donald, owner at Superior Pool Service
Topics will include alternative sanitizers; cyanuric acid levels; specialty products like enzymes, phosphate remover and clarifiers; plus speed pumps and what the upcoming pool season will look like.
On Demand How to Prepare for Federal Pool Pump Regulations That Will Impact Your Business and Boost Sales** 0.1 IACET CEUs
Presented by Jeff Farlow, program manager of energy initiatives at Pentair Aquatic Systems; Scott Petty, global product manager: pumps and filters at Hayward Pool Products
In July 2021, new federal regulation for energy-efficient pool pumps go into effect and will eliminate the poorest-performing pool pumps from the market. Many homeowners wish to save energy and reduce their energy expenses. By purchasing energy-efficient products including pool pumps, consumers can benefit from ENERGY STAR rebates and long-term energy savings. Attendees will gain understanding of future U.S. Department of Energy pool pump regulations and how to address this issue with their customers.
Properly design a plumbing system to greatly reduce pool operating costs
Discuss why energy-efficient and eco-friendly equipment saves power
On Demand Analysis and Understanding of Source Water** 0.1 IACET CEUs
Presented by James Egan, Ph.D., vice president of research and development at LaMotte Company; Terry Arko, independent contractor for recreational water at HASA Chemical
This discussion will include the problems associated with using chlorinated water to fill pools; common problems encountered with fill water such as high total dissolved solids (TDS) and metal concentration; and information on testing interferences. The panel will discuss how to anticipate, prevent and/or address many of these challenges with the latest technologies.
Evaluate the different types of source water
Discuss how these sources are managed
Evaluate what effects your source water can have on the operation of your pool
Discuss how to test your pool water and overcome common testing problems
On Demand Dos and Don’ts of Pool Engineering** | E151 0.1 IACET CEUs
Presented by Terry Brannon, P.E., founder emeritus at The Brannon Corporation, GENESIS Engineering faculty advisor
This session breaks down the engineering portions of a project with a checklist detailed from years of in-the-field experience. From plans and soils reporting to waterproofing and compressive strengths, students will leave with high-level information to easily relay these tips to your team.
Review areas of engineering on a job site, including plans, soils reports and waterproofing
Examine potential failures
Identify ways to rectify problems
“I think it is a great idea to ensure the safety of employees during the pandemic. We typically do not attend due to [seasonal] timing, however having it virtual and not needing to travel will allow us to attend different things when we are able. More and more things are going virtual, and people are getting accustomed to not being face-to-face and comfortable with this sort of interaction. [However, we will miss] giveaways and networking opportunities.”
Tracy Bond Owner, Great Valley Pool Frazer Pennsylvania
*These on-demand classes were chosen from the 2020 education lineup, and are being made available for free to all attendees. Starting November 11 and running until 30 days post-show, you can explore the education at your leisure. It is highly recommended, however, to login during the show days of November 11 to 13, when select instructors will be available for a Q&A.
**GENESIS classes with CEU credits. With the PHTA/GENESIS Bundle, you’re still getting cutting edge education, just with the bonus of credit hours. All 10 courses, plus the free courses, and a pass to the virtual expo hall, are available for $199. These classes are also available starting November 11 until 30 days post-show, with select instructors available during show days for Q&A.