Maurice Forde would tell you that one of the reasons for his company's success is his ability to "learn from others in this business and implement change when it makes sense." After getting his start as a window installer, Forde went out on his own, subcontracting carpentry and learning "by trial and error." It's a philosophy that's served him well -- especially when coupled with more formal education. He provides ongoing training for the whole company, including himself.

Forde says he "grew the company by taking myself out of the field" and found out early on that alliances with manufacturers and distributors were a great way to generate quality leads. The remodeler and NARI activist says that for him, the most enjoyable part of owning a business is "putting the systems in place to have things run smoothly."