The Twelve Laws – of Contract Glazing  
b y L y l e R . H i l l  
here I stood, alone, in total si-  
lence, absorbed in my own deep high for me.”  
and private thoughts in room “You know Lyle,one article you wrote what he thinks he wanted is 100 in 100.  
12 of the Barnes Foundation Museum about 12 or 15 years ago was particu- The Law of Cost Appropriations:  
in Philadelphia. My mind was trying to larly good and I should have kept a copy The architect’s fee on a given project is  
deal with the symbolism of the famous but didn’t. I think it was called the inversely proportionate to the quality of  
Paul Cezanne painting titled“The Large “Laws of Contract Glazing” or some- the drawings and specifications that he  
Pear” which was tastefully surrounded thing like that, and there were a couple or she will produce for the job.  
“Confirmed readers, Mike. A new in 100; the likelihood that an architect  
will blame you when he doesn’t get  
by a number of well know Renoirs. For of lines about the glazing contractor  
The Rule of Availability: The greater  
those of you not as well-versed in the dealing with the architect and GC that the architect’s resistance to product sub-  
fine arts as I am, the meaning of the were pretty good. Do you think you stitution, the greater the likelihood that  
mystery, and many great philosophers, that one again someday?  
as well as artists, through the ages have “Absolutely, Mike. Anything for a  
Large Pear” has long been a bit of a could find a copy for me or maybe run the specified product has been discontin-  
ued … in many cases for several years.  
The Sales Rep Axiom: The likeli-  
tried to decipher its real meaning. reader and by the way, are there any hood that any insider information or  
Specifically, why is there only one large other articles you liked and might want rumor told to you by a sales rep is true  
pear but four peaches? And why is the copies of or see run again in USG?  
pear on the plate and the peaches are “No, not really, but I did think that day when the rep in question is trying  
not? And that drawer—the one that is one was pretty good.”  
is approximately 38.92 percent. On a  
to get an order from you, the probabil-  
So,readers,because Mike is a student ity is 12.73 percent.  
The Law of Obsolescence: The likeli-  
only slightly open—what’s that about?  
Then, just as I felt an epiphany com- of the arts, and apparently knows what  
ing on,the silence and mood of this very he likes,the article he asked for follows. hood that a specified high-performance  
special moment was broken by a tap on And if any of you have any thoughts on product has been discontinued is di-  
my left shoulder.Quite startled,I turned the pear and peaches thing, don’t hesi- rectly proportional to the amount of  
to see who it was that had disrupted me. tate to call either Mike or me.  
Pardon me, but are you Lyle Hill?”  
the finely dressed gentleman asked.  
conversation we were about to have  
would be a short one.  
time and money its manufacturer spent  
marketing the product.  
Yes, I am,” I replied hoping that the LAWSOFCONTRACTGLAZING  
The Law of Consultancy: The length even when you are the only bidder.  
of time an individual has been a con- The Low-Bidder’s Dilemma: Never  
The Low-Bid Hypothesis: You will  
never be told you are the low bidder,  
“I thought so. I read your articles in sultant is directly proportional to the accept a contract on a job where you  
USGlass magazine every month. My distance between that person and real- were the low bidder unless you were the  
name is Michael D’Alicandro of Twin- ity – or the day he was terminated from only bidder.  
dows Inc. We’re headquartered right his last employer.  
The Law of Culpability: When a  
here in Philadelphia.” The First Law of Value Engineer- problem of any kind arises on a job of  
Two thoughts instantly raced through ing: The profit potential of any given any type or size,the architect will blame  
my mind. The first was that someone job is inversely proportional to the the glazing contractor, the general con-  
actually reads my articles and recog- number of value engineering ideas a tractor will blame the glazing contrac-  
nized me from my picture in the mag- given bidder provides.  
azine. The picture is pretty current,less  
The Second Law of Value Engi-  
than a year old, but more importantly, neering: The better your value en-  
apparently he actually reads my arti- gineering idea,the sooner it will be  
cles. But even more startling to me was shared with all of your competitors.  
L y l e R . H i l l is the managing  
director of Keytech North America,  
a company providing research and  
technical services for the glass and  
metal industry. Hill has more than  
finding a glass guy who obviously en-  
The Law of Architectural  
joyed and appreciated the fine arts. Acuteness: The likelihood that an  
Who would have thought?  
architect knows what he wants is  
That’s very nice of you,Mike.I think three in 100; the likelihood that an  
architect is able to communicate  
what he wants adequately is one  
0 years experience in the glass  
you’re number 14.”  
and metal industry and can be reached at You can read his blog every  
other Monday at  
“Fourteen what, Lyle?”  
USGlass, Metal & Glazing | June 2016  
tor, the owner’s consultant will blame  
the glazing contractor and, in an effort  
to improve his odds of getting paid on  
the job,the glazing contractor will even  
blame himself.  
The Culpability Corollary: When  
things go really well on a job, the archi-  
tect will claim all of the credit, the  
owner’s consultant will claim all of the  
credit, and the general contractor will  
ask the glazing contractor for a price re-  
duction. Thinking that it will somehow  
speed payments to him; the glazing  
contractor will apologize for things  
going so well … and cut his price. s  
June 2016 | USGlass, Metal & Glazing