NESEA Building Energy Bottom Line Group


“Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.”

― Eleanor Roosevelt

Running a small business can sometimes feel like it’s your team of people trying to reinvent the wheel of modern construction.   Beyond managing the general day to day of building projects and meeting our clients’ needs, there’s an ongoing concern about whether you’re making the right business decisions on a macro level. Add to that trying to stay ahead of all of the trends and building science advancements and it’s no wonder that most small business owners would benefit from a couple of extra hours every day. 

Almost since we started, Auburndale Builders has sought out peer groups to collaborate and determine best practices. The first group we worked with was the NAHB Builder 20 Club. More recently, we have joined NESEA’s Building Energy Bottom Line group, which is more focused on building science, passive house and a triple bottom line approach.

Our membership in NESEA – the  Northeast Sustainable Energy Association – includes participating in the NESEA Building Energy Bottom Line group. This peer review group, which consists of other builders, trades people and architects who are also NESEA members, meets several times a year to share challenges and opportunities our respective businesses face.

Recently, founder Nick Falkoff and Kathere Nunez, our Office Manager, attended a two-day, facilitated session in Vermont. Meeting with 26  other participants, Katherine found the session to be a “safe space to get different perspectives” on challenges they all face.

Nick has been participating in this Building Energy Bottom Lines group for seven years. He finds the NESEA sessions to be “great sounding boards, which allow us to get feedback before we try new initiatives. We get to see what works and what doesn’t work for other companies as they evolve their practices.  The construction industry is changing very quickly and being able to learn from the successes and missteps of other companies is valuable. We share a lot of our missteps with the community as well.” 

The group shares best practices through their focus on a triple bottom line – People, Planet and Prosperity – working to determine the answers to the questions: How do we take care of our teams? How do we build great spaces for our clients in a less damaging way to the planet? How do we help our staff  prosper? These are great questions to be regularly asking each other as practitioners and sharing our responses with one another.