So it's time to get back into the nitty gritty of the industry after the rush and excitement of GlassBuild America. Before the show, a ton of news broke, and we put it on the shelf until after the show so it could get its proper due. And of course, since the show there’s been significant news too. So without further delay, let’s get caught up!
- A comment was left on a recent blog post about the lack of action regarding training our glaziers and industry. This is a massive problem and one that will most likely get worse before it gets better. Reason being, with everyone slashing costs, one of the first things to go is education and training. It’s a classic corner cut. Add that to our aging industry workforce, lack of feeders and the volatile nature of our world, and this IS a massive problem that deserves debate. There is no easy fix either, because it will need a concerted industry effort to improve the situation. Our industry has never been known to work together, so we have our work cut out for us.
- One person who was working very hard to provide education to our industry sadly is leaving us. David Walker, the excellent VP of Association Services for the NGA is moving on to a tremendous gig as president and CEO of the Coalition to Support America’s Heroes. It is a great organization that is doing extremely important work for the men and women who risk their lives to protect us every day. David was instrumental in reviving the NGA education efforts, and he will be missed. However, the NGA acted very quickly and hired David’s replacement in Jim Gandorf. I was able to spend a few minutes with Jim at GlassBuild and came away extremely impressed. I am confident that the issues that I note above will be on Jim’s radar and he’ll be pushing hard to take the work that David and team began to the next level. Welcome to our world Jim!
- The Architectural Billings Index bounced back. Parse that with a great trade show, and I’m back on the positive train.
- The Glass Magazine People awards were a hit, and a major congrats to all of the winners. I do not know Brian Abrisz or Richard Poirier personally, but I am sure they deserve after winning such a huge vote. What an honor! I do know John McGee and I am thrilled for him, a great guy who I have immense respect for. As for the last winner, that category was tough, with John Bush, Scott White and the eventual winner Waylon McCall. I actually worked at one time or another with all three. I think the world of all three and wish I had a portion of their talent. I'm happy for Waylon, since this award should make up for past crushing fantasy league losses (LOL). Seriously though, how anyone who knows these three could pick between them is beyond me. In any case, looking at all of the nominees and winners does show the talent we have in our industry, and I am sure next year these awards will be even harder to vote on. Heck, if we could have a training program led by the guys above, maybe we could solve some of our workforce issues!
- The great news out of Colorado about RavenBrick (full disclosure, my firm does consulting work for them) was exciting. Getting funding and preparing to go into full production in a new plant is just tremendous for the company founders and employees who have worked their tails off to get to this point. It also shows that dynamic glass, whether its thermochromic like this, or electrochomic from Sage or Soladigm, is going to be a major player in our world going forward. The momentum is there.
- One more show note, did any of you who stayed at the LVH laugh over the “Go Green” offer in your rooms? The LVH would give you a $5 coupon a day to skip getting your room cleaned in the name of “green." That just slayed me. What a great efficiency improver. Give someone $5 that has to be used in the hotel, and save time and money not having staff clean. That has got to be the most creative usage of the green meme yet.
- Last, I picked USC to win it all, and they have already lost, and I picked the Dolphins to go winless, and they have already won. Nice to see I can still pick ‘em!
The author is founder of Sole Source Consultants, a consulting firm for the building products industry that specializes in marketing, branding, communication strategy and overall reputation management, as well as website and social media, and codes and specifications. E-mail him at MaxP@SoleSourceConsultants.com.
The opinions expressed here are those of the individual author and do not necessarily reflect those of the National Glass Association, Glass Magazine editors, or other glassblog contributors.