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Pool Products: Concrete Countertop Solutions Products Will Help You Grow Your Business



Dealing With the Trichlor Shortage Head On

A good percentage of homeowners renovated their outdoor spaces following the covid-19 travel restrictions. Everyone was looking for a mini-escapade during summer. So, people made the most out of their backyards. The owner of Montanero Construction Co., Christian Montanero, says, “Due to the high demand for pool remodeling and construction services, we’ve had to up our game. At present, one of our primary objectives is to modify backyard spaces into luxurious holiday destinations.” Luckily, the company is now using pool products that help in managing time and reducing labor costs.

Pool Products: Concrete Countertop Solutions Products Will Help You Grow Your Business

From the early years, concrete has been used to build and design pools. Today, not much has changed. Concrete Countertop Solutions help pool contractors to meet all their customer requirements. In particular, the company helps team members of Montanero deliver quality edging jobs within a short period. The builders at Montanero say that they always use at least one product of Concrete Countertop Solutions per project. They could use the products for coping, building retaining walls, and countertops. The best thing about these pool products is that they allow you to be innovative. For instance, they recently started revitalizing yard spaces using outdoor fireplaces. And the results have been amazing.

Integrating Z Counterforms and Z Poolforms for the best outcome

How do you create smooth edges using the Z Counterforms? Contrary to popular belief, it is not hard to work with this product. All you have to do is put 0.5 inches of cement on the backer board and fasten the Z Counterform along the edges. Leave the concrete to cure for 24 hours. When you go back onsite the next day, you’ll notice that the Z Counterform will start showing a pristine edge. Z Counterforms are not only used for pools but also for other features like sinks and outdoor kitchens.

Using Z Poolforms for coping is pretty much the same for all pool types; fiberglass, vinyl, and gunite. The Z Poolforms incorporate strong PVC pieces that are compatible with all pool materials. These forms do not move unnecessarily; hence they do not fall or get blown away by the wind. One of the best things about these forms is that you can reuse them for another project. The removal process is simple. Z Poolforms also enable you to avoid using Styrofoam pieces.

Before, Montanero used Z Counterforms for his pool projects. But when he got to know about Z Poolforms, he preferred integrating the two products to obtain the best results. He says, “During the first appointment with our clients, we get to know their requirements. More often than not, we ask them to fill in a questionnaire. This enables us to know the pool design they wish to construct. For instance, we use a square-edge form for customers who prefer twenty-first-century pools. We always take the time to show them samples from our previous projects so that they can have the right expectations.”

Once they choose a particular pool design, Montanero will create a drawing of the pool design. The drawing will capture all the details of the project. Then, he sends the drawing to an expert 3D pool designer. The designer will come up with the best 3D pool design that shows the exact outcome of the project. From there, he can present the 3D pool design to a client.

Montanero says, “I prefer creating virtual pool designs because clients will see the exact outcome of the project. Not to mention, 3D pool designs also help me stay on track. Additionally, clients can always make modifications to their pools even before construction. Consequently, pool construction will take a short time.”

Concrete offers high versatility

Unlike other pool materials, concrete is highly customizable. Z Poolforms and Z Counterforms make it easier to install concrete water features. These pool products allow you to get creative. In turn, they help you create exceptional pools and expand your customer base.

Montanero says, “Z Counterforms and Z Poolforms are not only limited to pool projects. A while back, we used counterforms on an indoor kitchen and basement bar top. After completing indoor projects, we always find ourselves working on the outdoor area of the same client. In such instances, we prefer using the same materials to avoid a conspicuous contrast between the indoor area and the outdoor area.”

Ultimately, Montanero says that Z Poolforms and Z Counterforms have helped him grow his business. Pool contractors should undoubtedly try out these pool products. Customers often love the outcome. Even so, you have to know how to use counterforms in your project. Otherwise, the result won’t be aesthetically pleasing. Remember, you can get creative with concrete.

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Pool News coverage brought to you by Pool Magazine's own Marcus Packer. Marcus Packer is a 20 year pool industry veteran pool builder and pool service technician. In addition to being a swimming pool professional, Marcus has been a writer and long time contributor for Newsweek Magazine's home improvement section and more recently for Florida Travel + Life. Have a story idea or tip you'd like to share with Pool Magazine? Email your story idea.

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Industry News

Keeping Employees Happy & Committed To Your Business

Creating a roadmap for retention that allows employees a chance to grow is important to the success of your organization.



Keeping Employees Happy and Committed To Your Organization

It’s a Saturday afteroon and I’m on one of the most active Groups pertaining to the pool industry, 14psi Pool Industry Lounge on Facebook – when a fantastic question pops up pertaining to the retention of key employees.

One of the members of the group asked an interesting question that many in the pool industry often wonder, “How do you keep employees happy and wanting to stay with your business?”

It’s a relevant question and one that has a few simple solutions that are easy to follow. Jeff Johnston, owner of Quality Clear Pools posted a simple image that really illustrates the key cornerstones of employee retention.

Employees will stay when they are:

  1. Paid Well
    It’s vital that employees feel that they are well compensated for their labor, and paid a proper wage for the services provided. Bargain basement shopping for the cheapest talent will hold you back as an organization and hold back the quality and caliber of your work.
  2. Mentored
    There is a saying that goes “you have to sink or swim in the pool industry“, but that shouldn’t hold true to training brand new wet behind the ears workers who are in their first season of learning the ropes. Nobody likes to be thrown into a lions den. If you don’t have the resources and bandwidth to mentor new employees, perhaps delay bringing them on until you do or pay to send them for the proper training so that they can adequately perform the tasks you’ve assigned them.
  3. Challenged
    Key employees thrive on being challenged with new roles and responsibilities that enable them to prove their long term value to your organization. By not allowing employees the opportunity for personal growth within their role, there is nowhere to go and little chance to grow their skill set.
  4. Promoted
    Keeping someone confined to a role they’ve outgrown is a recipe for disaster. As people expand as individuals you have to present them with the same opportunities that allowed you to become successful. Promoting key employees to managerial and supervisory positions allows you to step back a bit and let that employee own some responsibility. It’s also important to see rule #1 because a salary adjustment should correlate with any promotion in responsibility.
  5. Involved
    Immersing your employees into the culture of your company and allowing them to be part of the history and community your business is centered around serving personally invests people. Keeping employees at arms length and detached from customers, teams, and activities is never a good strategy. The best team leaders create an atmosphere of inclusion.
  6. Appreciated
    It never hurts to single someone out for a job well done. People love recognition of their service, and it’s especially vital that you find ways to celebrate personal achievement and growth within your teams. Fostering the type of environment that punctuates milestones in an employees growth is a great way to instill a feeling that their efforts are appreciated. It’s also important to show your appreciation in more tangible ways the employee can feel in their wallet. Giving a bonus for extraordinary service is a great way to incentivize and create a positive team culture where employees feel committed to the business.
  7. Trusted
    Trusting employees to do their role is essential. Letting go of the reigns a bit is important and it enables your employees to flourish as they feel a sense of camaraderie and foundation built on that trust. Allowing key employees some visibility about the business is also essential towards establishing mutual trust and long term growth. Every business has a circle of trust and who you let into it should be based off of their contributions to the business and the merit of their character.
  8. Empowered
    Employees need to have a sense of empowerment within the role you’ve assigned them. Providing an employee with a roadmap towards achieving growth within your organization is a core fundamental. Empowering them to manage teams, take on bigger roles, or focus on more important projects is a signal to that employee that you trust them. It fufills people on a personal level to know they are matriculating to a higher level and being given more responsibility.
  9. Valued
    Key employees will stay with you through thick and thin if they feel they are valued. If your employees know unequivocally you appreciate their labor, talent, efforts, and intellect they will feel value and personal fulfillment. In reality, there probably isn’t a person on the face of the planet that doesn’t feel like their contributions are valued enough. Demonstrating that you value the time, energy, commitment and drive your key employees bring to the table is an important part in keeping them happy.

“I think we are heading into a new world order where long term employment with one company in any industry or occupation will be rare.”

Jeff Hampe

Unfortunately at the end of the day, there is no magic recipe for keeping everyone happy. Even the world’s greatest coach Vince Lombardi knew that the true measure of a successful organization is their ability to organize a winning team. That starts with finding people who are team players. Some of the most talented inviduals have trouble working in a team setting.

"The achievements of an organization are the results of the combined effort of each individual." - Vince Lombardi

There is no denying that we live in a different world than our parents did. Keeping employees committed to an organization is tough in the world we live in today. In the world our parents and grandparents grow up in, folks spent the majority of their lives working for a single company. Those days are long gone for many different industries, but that doesn’t have to hold true for the pool industry. At the end of the day we each are presented with the opportunity to be the author of our own story. What defines your organization could very well be your ability to adapt these very core values as part of your strategy for mentoring growth.

Creating a culture that promotes from within and allows people the opportunity to grow starts with selecting the right people first. Keeping your A players happy is important, and it’s equally important to create the type of roadmap we spoke of for your B players as well.

What are some things you do to motivate and incentivize employees in your organization? What strategies do you use to put a winning team out on the field? Sound off in the comments.

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Industry News

Pool Magazine Adds Jimi Smith as In-House Photographer



Jimi Smith Pool Photography Will Grace The Covers of Pool Magazine

Pool Magazine is proud to announce the addition of world famous pool photographer Jimi Smith as our in-house photographer for our publication. Jimi Smith will be the exclusive photographer for all cover features that elect to have our in-house team photograph their projects. A veteran pool photographer with numerous magazine covers to his credit, Smiths work has been seen all over the internet and social media. He has fast become a favorite among elite design / build firms.

Jimi Smith Photography
Ryan Hughes Design – Photo Credit: Jimi Smith Photography

“Jimi is a household name in the pool industry, everyone knows and admires his work so this type of partnership makes absolute sense” said Pool Magazine Editor – Joe Trusty, “There isn’t a single builder in America that doesn’t wish he could have Jimi come out and shoot their pools.”

Jimi Smith is often brought in as a freelance photographer by some of the biggest stars in the pool industry and has produced an incredible volume of work over the past decade. Consequently, his photos have been shared millions of times all over social media. His intimate knowledge of how pools operate and how to best stage the pool area to be photographed have produced him an incredible following.

“As we make our transition this autumn to a print publication, Smith will be an invaluable resource. His incredible photos will add a new dimension of refinement and sophistication to Pool Magazine” said Carol Gigliotti, Director of Sales & Marketing.

As our in-house photographer, Smiths photos will grace the majority of covers for our trade publication. His talent for producing jaw dropping photographs, truly captures the architectural beauty of swimming pools.

Jimi Smith will be attending the International Pool | Spa | Patio Expo in Dallas in November, where he will be giving a presentation to the Genesis group on pool photography. Smith will be a featured guest at our booth during the Expo. We invite you to stop by Booth #1624 in the Genesis Pavillion and get to know our new publication and meet world famous pool photographer, Jimi Smith.

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Industry News

Why Build a Luxury Inground Pool?



Why Build a Luxury Inground Pool?

The covid-19 pandemic forced most homeowners to upgrade their outdoor spaces. As a result, there was an increased demand for pools and pool services. A good percentage of homeowners constructed luxury inground pools last year. Generally, inground swimming pools serve as great sources of entertainment and relaxation. But we cannot deny the fact that these spectacular features are not simple to maintain. So, why build a luxury inground pool?

Why Build a Luxury Inground Pool?

Why you should build a luxury inground pool in your backyard

Health benefits

Luxury inground swimming pools help individuals boost their overall health. Swimming daily improves your physical and mental health. If you have this feature in your home, you need not sign up for aerobic or gym classes. You can exercise from the comfort of your own home. A large luxury inground pool helps you do the best cardio workouts without experiencing too much strain on your body. Not to mention, you can always sit inside the pool after a long day to unwind and destress.

Unparalleled privacy

One of the best things about having a professional build a luxury inground pool in your home is that you don’t get to share it with anyone. Public pools may not be as hygienic as your pool. If you have a luxury inground pool, you can always decide who can access the pool. Additionally, there is something beautiful about swimming alone in your backyard without any distractions.

Social benefits 

Luxury inground pools enable you to host pool parties, among other special events by the poolside. Here, you can bond with your loved ones. During summer, you can host outdoor cookouts. In fact, some celebrities use their poolside as their album release party location. You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars hiring a location for a wedding or your child’s birthday party. Having a luxury inground pool provides the perfect event location in your yard.

Aesthetic benefits

Undoubtedly, luxury inground pools can transform your yard into a premium oasis. These pools incorporate a wide range of water features that provide exceptional aesthetics. Additionally, most luxury inground pools have world-class pool designs. So, they make your property look more appealing. In turn, luxury inground pools increase your property’s value.

Nevertheless, always choose the right features that complement your backyard. If you build a luxury inground pool, you are more likely to gain a large return on investment when selling your property. If you are a commercial pool owner, you attract more people to your pool. So, you are in a better position to gain a higher return on investment.

Keeping your children occupied during summer

Currently, most individuals are working from home. It can be stressful to concentrate when your children are running all over the place. Luckily, installing a luxury inground pool provides more hours of pool play for your children. When you have a swimming pool on your property, your children are likely to spend their day by the poolside. Consider installing water features like slides to make their swimming experiences more enjoyable.

Important information about luxury inground pools

Massive construction costs

Building a luxury inground pool can take a toll on your budget. On average, inground swimming pools cost approximately $35,000 to $100,000. Adding custom features to make the pool luxurious costs an extra $2,000 to $10,000. If you are not careful, pool construction can make you bankrupt. Consider saving for luxury inground pool construction. Also, consider applying for pool financing options. Nowadays, there is a broad spectrum of pool lenders who can help you make your pool dreams come true.

Safety hazards

Although pools offer many hours of enjoyment, we cannot deny that these features pose safety concerns. Accidents are common, especially in most commercial pools. Based on previous statistics, a good percentage of fatalities in the United States resulted from drowning. Luckily, most pool owners are doing their best to promote safety in the pool. For example, commercial pool owners employ people to monitor everyone swimming in the pool.

Skin irritation and contamination

Public pools put people at risk of contamination. Also, chlorine in pools can lead to skin and eye irritation. This chemical is not entirely safe for people with sensitive skin. Fortunately, most pool owners take the time to disinfect their pools regularly. There are many techniques and chemicals to keep pools clean. So, this shouldn’t be a problem. If you are a pool owner, do your best to keep your pool clean at all times.


Luxury inground pools offer both advantages and disadvantages. Knowing whether they are worth a try depends on your needs. Before you build a luxury inground pool, understand all the pros and cons involved in building these features. More often than not, the advantages will always outweigh the disadvantages.

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