The value of membership

by Jim Williams

member_of_paintingSeen it all? Not hardly, says Willie Plaza, owner of All Pro Painting, Inc. in Corona, CA. Plaza has been in the painting business for 23 years, and while he’s tackled every job imaginable, he knows that the next customer might throw him a curveball.

What isn’t new to Plaza is the Painting and Decorating Contractors of America (PDCA), a national trade association founded more than 100 years ago. The PDCA has been a strong voice and the conscience of painting and decorating contractors across the country, setting quality standards, providing advocacy, establishing best practices, and offering training and education for its members.

Plaza says PDCA membership brings welcomed access to other paint contractors. “The fact that you can talk to other (PDCA) contractors, regardless of the situation, is a big benefit. Whether it’s a problematic issue, advice, or a scope of work that maybe you’re not familiar with, people are very open to sharing their experiences,” he says.

And competition doesn’t seem to sour relationships either. “They’re not a threat or [viewed as] competition. … Everyone pretty much has their niche market for what they do, and whom they do business with. That’s the biggest reason why I joined,” Plaza adds.

Russ Phillips agrees. The president of Ontario, CA-based Vertex Coatings says the PDCA’s educational tools give his business a competitive edge. Those tools include on-site professional courses, webinars and online classes. The PDCA’s Contractor College is also a valuable resource, and its BizLibrary Online Training Center offers more than 6,000 new online learning opportunities.

“The PDCA membership definitely pays for itself over and over again every year,” Phillips adds.

Plaza also values how PDCA has helped him keep abreast of the latest laws and standards for the industry. “There are evolving changes in our industry when it comes to labor law, and understanding our rights as an employer is important,” he says.

For more information about the PDCA, read an expanded feature story in the winter 2015 issue of inPAINT® magazine.

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