September 2017

View all on this date written articles further down below.

Meet Gary Deter

Gary Deter

Gary Deter, the owner of Architectural Door Consultants, in Laguna Miguel, Calif., is helping to drive the western expansion of Total Door. As the company’s representative for Southern California, Arizona and southern Nevada, Gary has been a key force in identifying and signing on well-respected distributors in a vital part of the country.

“Projects are booming on the west coast,” Gary says, adding that he’s excited to bring Total Door Systems into more of them.

Gary has been in the door and hardware industry for 36 years and added Total Door to his product list two years ago. He said the addition of Total Door products allows him to compete with some of the largest firms on the west coast for every project.

His process of working with distributors is to emphasize direct contact with distributors to foster relationships and a deeper understanding of their specific needs. Gary works with a complete customer-centric approach, which means ensuring that distributors have the right training and support to understand new products, how they relate to their specific markets, and the full spectrum of support options available to them through Total Door.

As part of Total Door’s inaugural Advisory Council, Gary is interested in candid feedback from distributors on the tools and support that would help them work more successfully with Total Door Systems.

“Communication is a two-way street at Total Door,” Gary says, “It’s an important value that we share.”

Elevator Shaft Pressure Standard

The old axiom about an ounce of prevention being worth a pound of cure holds true in an emerging issue regarding pressure parameters in our industry. The lack of a standard pressure parameter for doors that protect elevator shafts during a fire has meant that many doors are subject to as much as 30 – 40 pounds of pressure, an unsustainable amount for nearly any door.

The problem presented itself during a recent project audit in California. Doors were slamming with too much force because the elevator shafts were pressurized twice as high as necessary. Elevator shafts are pressurized to contain smoke and prevent it from spreading to different floors.

Smoke evacuation design is important, but all too often overlooked. The teams in charge of HVAC and door specifications can operate in silos. The lack of communication means that while there are general suggestions on the pressure, the range is too broad to be meaningful, and no standard parameter has emerged to guide the process.

Beyond identifying the right specification, bridging the communication gap and inviting more collaboration with HVAC is the goal. The right spec will maximize door protection and safety, and maintain Total Door’s reputation for excellence – before and after installation.

While Total Door is at the front end of confronting this issue, we will keep you informed of our progress in upcoming newsletters.

Mentoring Program Preps Next Generation Talent

Mentoring Program

At Total Door Systems, we make no small – or short-term – plans. That thinking is what drove the creation of a mentoring program to help a newer generation of workers get the skills and mindset that they need to succeed.

Mike Beels, a lean program manager for the Michigan Manufacturing Technology Center, is working with Total Door to provide one-on-one development programs for young talent. The work means that employees find practical ways to sharpen their skills, cross-train or train up. Before too long, the employees come up with their own ideas on how to improve performance, and put them in action.

Mike pointed to Nick Waters, a maintenance technician as an example. Nick took the initiative to teach himself how to create Total Productive Maintenance documents after a mentoring session.

The mentoring program is key to ensuring that Total Door has the talent and insight it needs to drive momentum forward, says CEO Patricia Yulkowski, and it’s a core part of Total Door’s philosophy to ensure that everyone has the tools and support they need to continuously improve performance.


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