Max Perilstein's blog

We can debate the merits of programs like LEED until we’re all blue in the face. The bottom line, though, is the performance and sustainability of the building when all is said and done. And while the various green rating systems are pivoting and making efforts to evolve their programs into ensuring long-range success, there’s one process that guarantees it: the Net Zero building.

Slowly but surely Net Zero is taking off. It's important in the glass industry, because the process rewards the glass/glazing performance and basically will force those pesky HVAC guys to size their efforts correctly. Too many times we get blamed (unfairly I must add) for the oversizing of HVAC units because there’s no trust in fenestration. With Net Zero, we’re all working together and the playing field does level. There’s a ton to this process, and it's still pretty raw, but I do believe it will be in the mainstream sooner than many think.

Elsewhere…

  • Speaking of sustainability, one of the great champions of the effort in our industry is Mark Silverberg of Technoform. Last week he was named to the AAMA Sustainability Steering Committee. Can’t get a better man than that to be a force in the effort!
  • The energy of the trade show/industry conference is the hottest in years. So far 2014 is showing a major uptick in attendance and excitement. A couple more regional shows are coming up to be aware of. The 27th Annual Mid Atlantic Glass Expo hits April 30th in Greenbelt, Md.  Then in Canada, the Canadian Glass Association's Glass Connections conference in Nova Scotia (would love to go, birthplace of the great Sidney Crosby) comes through on June 4-5. Both events will provide excellent learning and networking potential. And don’t forget about the granddaddy of them all, the biggest show in all of North America: GlassBuild America, in September in Vegas. That floor is filling up nicely, and it will be an incredible event not to be missed.
  • After a hiatus in doing interviews on the blog, we welcome that segment back. One area of the business that I am always fascinated by is switchable glass, specifically  liquid crystal and suspended particle products. These products are growing in usage thanks to the boom on the decorative glass side. It’s surely moving up from the “niche” category. So it was great to catch up with Anthony Branscum, director of architectural sales at Innovative Glass Corp. in New York, and talk with him about the growth of the product, some of misconceptions out there and more.

MP: What do you think is driving this positive direction and usage?

Anthony Branscum: I think it’s mainly because the products have come a long way and are now beyond the “Proof of Concept” stage. Architects around the country, and the world for that matter, are realizing the practical benefits of using these products in their designs. Perhaps more importantly, they have gained confidence that the technology will last when it gets out there. They have become educated consumers. 

MP: Speaking specifically on the liquid crystal product, there’s been talk recently in different circles about uneven performance and products failing. Do you think such talk is legitimate or is it being overblown?
 

AB: I have heard and read some of the same things you are alluding to. There’s a lot of posturing going on within the industry right now. Some suppliers of switchable glass are spending a lot of time bashing their competitors instead of talking about their own virtues. They believe it makes their product appear as if it’s “the best”, but what they’re really doing is hurting the industry at large. They’re creating a perception out there that the product won’t last.  It is simply not true.  When fabricated properly, one can expect many years of service from liquid crystal technology. Of course, there are companies that don’t produce a great product, but they are not the majority, and time will eventually run out on them.

MP: What should buyers do or look for to make sure they are dealing with the right people?

AB: They should make sure whoever they are dealing with can provide them a functioning sample. They should ask for a copy of the warranty. They should definitely ask for references and perhaps ask to see a job local to them where the glass has successfully been installed. If the vendor can’t satisfy these requests in a timely fashion, they should think twice about going too far with them. 

MP: You and your company have been in the switchable space for more than a decade. What are some of the biggest changes you have seen with the product offerings?

AB: The biggest change has been the advancement in the clarity of the LC films when they are in their clear state. The industry has come a long way in achieving better clarity. The second notable advancement would be the film widths. The product is available in wider widths than ever before. This helps satisfy most of the common architectural sizes we come across.

Read on for links and video of the week...

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.

Last month I was very lucky to be involved in a panel that featured four incredible glazing contractors from four of the best companies in our industry. It was during that time that I learned even more about what the day-to-day adventures are for the glazing contractor in the fast-paced world we currently live in. That session really opened my eyes to challenges I did not even know existed. So this week when I attended a webinar that featured the 37th Annual Deltek Clarity A&E Industry Study, I was more in-tune than I would’ve been before my session back in February.

The big takeaway I wanted to share from the study was a poll that ran down the “Top Project Management Challenges,” and based on what I knew and recently learned, I don’t think anyone will be surprised. Here are some of the big ones:

Competing priorities including project management, design, business etc.

  • Inexperienced people up and down the chain
  • Communication
  • Schedule viability
  • Poorly defined scope
  • Accurate project cost and timeline forecasting

I would assume everyone who either manages projects or has a staff that does are nodding their heads right now. So it’s good we know about the issues, but what in the world can we do about them? That’s a session I’d love to attend if it ever happens!

Elsewhere…

  • Time for the monthly review of Glass Magazine. This is an issue very close to my heart because at the core of my being, I am a fabricator and this is the annual “Top Glass Fabricator” edition. Tremendous reading and resource overall, and major kudos to everyone listed. So many great organizations doing significant things in our world. Please take some time to check it out. And a tip of the cap to Bethany Stough and the team that pulled this thing together. That much info is not easy to make sense of, and they really knocked it out of the park.
  • Aside from the fabricator coverage, there was also another article I want to point out. The “Succession through Hardship” piece about family business and the transfer that follows death, illness, etc. Obviously this is another one that I get from a personal level as well. Interesting and heart-wrenching stories for me, but also very inspirational on how people dealt with it and moved positively forward into the future.
  • The ad of the month was a tough one. A lot of very good ones and many new entries thanks most likely to the fabricator-heavy coverage. Was great to see ads from people I had never seen previously like Woonsocket, GlassFab, Glass Vice and others. But my winner for this month is SC Railing. I think the pictures they chose made sense. I also thought the extra white space worked, and I am usually not a fan of that style, but in this case it was a winning look. Congrats SC Railing team…
  • There was an update this week on the joint meetings between the Glass Association of North America and the National Glass Association, and basically things continue to head down an encouraging path. That is great to see and the feedback I am getting continues to be extremely positive. The desire for a streamlined, focused approach is something that we all need in our world right now.
  • Last this week, GANA wrapped up its Annual Conference last week and announced various members of the year and the Greg Carney Member of the Year Award.
  • From GANA:

    2017 Division Award Recipients were nominated by their peers based on leadership and volunteerism with regard to their activities within the respective Division in the past year. 
    • BEC Division: Jeff Haber – W&W Glass Company
    • Decorative Division: Marc Deschamps – Walker Glass Co., Ltd.
    • Energy Division: Sarah Sinusas – Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates
    • Insulating Division: Jeff Haberer – Trulite Glass & Aluminum
    • Laminating Division: Julia Schimmelpenningh – Eastman Chemical Company
    • Tempering Division: Steve Marino – Vitro Architectural Glass
    • C.G. Carney Member of the Year: Stanley Yee- Dow Corning Corporation

Everyone who was honored richly deserved the nods. Great people who truly give of themselves as volunteers to the industry. But I am so happy that Greg’s name continues to live on in the form of this award. Such a great man that was taken from his family and us way too soon.

Read on for links and video of the week…

Max Perilstein 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.

One thing that many in this industry absolutely covet beyond anything else is interaction with architects. Obviously, it makes sense on many levels because the architect can surely make a difference in the advancement of your product and services. But even with all of the working of this group, do we know what they want?

Well, this week I finally got an idea after seeing AIA’s excellent study on the “Journey to Specification.” One of the main keys was education, and I think we all knew that, but it was the specific breakdown of the learning needs that was interesting. Evidently a majority of the respondents want their education in shorter and more creative and coherent bursts, and they want it without a sales spin. So basically, quick hits from a technical guy or engineer is the preferred method. And they also want the ability to take advantage of apps/technology that supply the education in micro-style sessions like CEStrong (that several industry companies use) that still offer the necessary CEUs they want/need, while getting their education in small bites. I think the traditional “Lunch n Learn” will always be there and needed, but I think we all know it's not the most effective vehicle.

Another point made: architects want better website layouts from the manufacturers. This is an area I fight and lose daily with manufacturers. So maybe seeing a survey like this will open some eyes. Architects want a site that breaks down the supply process in areas such as design stage, specification stage, and review and approval stage. I believe the issue for many companies is that they get caught up in the minutia of the site look and they completely miss the layout (optimized best for user) and content.

There were many other items from the study, but these to me were the highlights. At the end of the day, we can do all of what the architect wants, but getting them to spend the time, even however minimal, will always be a challenge. But at least we know some of the keys they are currently after.

Elsewhere…

  • Alex Carrick, chief economist for Construct Connect, is one of the best follows on Twitter. There are always a few pieces to keep you informed on the economy and forecasts. One example was a link to his blog on one of my favorite indicators to follow, the “put in place” spending study. The details are a bit concerning as it's showing some weakness out there on the nonresidential side. When I see words like “softening” and “backsliding,” it makes my stomach turn. This is surely one to monitor.
  • A few weeks ago I mentioned that “Measure S” in Southern California was up for vote and there was quite a bit of debate on it. The voters now have spoken, defeating the measure significantly, at an almost 2-to-1 margin (though voter turnout may have been amongst the lowest ever there). Developers seemingly are the big winner on this one, but from everything I read and heard on it, there’s still great need to get the area up to speed with planning, zoning and codes.
  • The designs and plans are coming out for the new Los Angeles Rams stadium, and this is one for my façade geeks out there. They are promoting a breathable façade that will respond to the climate so the need for HVAC won’t be there. Hmmm. I am not smart enough to compute that. Here’s the article. Interesting stuff. 
  • From the "how far we have come" files, the Apple II computer came out this month in 1987, and sold for $7000. That would be like $15,000 in today’s dollars. There is no question that part of the world has made incredible advancements.
  • Last this week, I failed to mention last week that the amazing show “The Americans” is back. If you have not seen it, start at season 1 and go from there. The show will end in 2018, so conclusions are coming…

Read on for links and video of the week…

Max Perilstein 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.

Do you ever wonder if some of the tried and true ways of doing things will ever get disrupted? A few years ago a speaker at GlassBuild America brought up the possibility of “leasing” the building products installed into buildings, presumably allowing the payments to be spread differently, and if necessary opening that area up for upgrades. Obviously that’s MUCH easier said than done and that was the last I have heard of that. Recently, another approach started to gain steam: breaking the traditional funding of buildings from the bank model to a crowd-funded one. Crowd funding or crowd sourcing is a popular way to get things going in different parts of our world, especially on the entrepreneurial side. But a building investment? That’s surely a different game. Yet it is happening, and you start to wonder, could this be a true way of getting structures built? And if so, how will it change our approach on the building product side, if at all? I’m curious if anyone has had to work on a project like this, and if there were any noticeable differences.

Elsewhere…

  • Something happened to me for the first time in all my years of travel, through tons and tons of nights away: I was part of a hotel evacuation. Not a fire drill and return to the room, but an actual evacuation. Oh, and all of it with no power, too. The hotel I was at lost electricity around 10 p.m. It did not phase me. I don’t watch TV usually and had enough juice in my phone to use that as flashlight and for reading. I fall asleep and all is well until 3 a.m. when I hear loud banging on the door. I’m thinking it has to be for another room down the hall, someone drunk needing back in their room. But the banging continues and then I hear “hotel management, open up” as well. So I drag myself to the door and find the hotel manager and three firefighters. They tell me the hotel is being evacuated; everyone must go now. And take everything with you. While the power is still out. You can only imagine the adventure from there. Trying to gather everything while still trying to get my bearings, etc. I get it all together and go down to the lobby where I am told a room at a hotel a mile away is available for me. So off I went, still amazed this was happening. Made it to new hotel, checked in and got another hour of sleep before having to start my very tired day. Evidently at the evacuated hotel, there was concern of a gas leak, thus the urgency, but I am not sure if anything ever was found. But this was surely a first (and hopefully a last) for me.
  • Interesting issue in Ohio where a bill going to the General Assembly there would give cities the right to decide if they want to pay prevailing wages on taxpayer funded projects. So obviously, if you are a glazier there this gets you one way or another.
  • Use of wood in tall curtain walls had a few hits in the media this week. Wood has always been a player on the residential window side and there’s been some folks pushing hard for timber curtain walls for commercial projects (large and small), but it’s been a true niche play, really. This blog post really dives deep and paints a picture for growth. So I’m curious, industry folks, what do you think? Are timber curtain walls big players in our future?
  • If you have not seen the latest from the new Apple headquarters building, please check out my video of the week. Good one for the glass and metal geeks out there.

  • Last this week, great tweet heads up from Thomas Lee of Lee & Cates Glass pointing out a story from Norway. NRK, a broadcaster there, instituted a new commenting policy on its stories. You now have to answer three questions about the story before you can comment on an article. It’s meant to deter “trolls” from taking over the comment section. Obviously trolling still will happen, but hopefully with less frequency.

Read on for links and video of the week…

Max Perilstein 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.

It’s the end of the month and I truly expect some big acquisition news to break. But then again, I have felt that way for a while, so we’ll see if my senses are accurate or not. Sometimes deals look perfect on the surface, yet they fall apart. I had heard last summer about a pretty major deal, things were moving fast, the buyer had a team working “around the clock” on it and so on. In the end, though, for a variety of reasons nothing happened: no deal. But this time I think we’ll see some action, whether it’s this week or sometime in the next month, as I see at least three deals close to the finish line. I will say the whole angle with researching things like this was a ton easier in 2007-2008 when I broke a few of them on here. Those were simpler times for this sort of stuff for sure!

Elsewhere…

  • The past AAMA event looked like it had some excellent content. One of the recaps I read included the discussion of LCA and EPDs. That is an area where we as an industry still don’t have a great grasp. However, the energy committee at GANA has done an admirable job of pushing the importance of it. Efforts like those (from people like Mark Silverberg and Helen Sanders) and coverage of the topic at an event like AAMA’s surely helps. In my opinion, cost and time to achieve this information is surely a scary proposition for many at this point, but it sure looks like demand for these assessments is not going away.
  • For my friends in Southern California, any insight on “Measure S?” According to this article, it will hurt commercial building and development. But I am curious from the folks on the ground and doing business every day out there what your thoughts are. And, of course with any ballot measure, there’s usually, as my brother Steve would say, “three sides to the story” with each side taking a point and the truth lying somewhere in the middle.
  • If you ever watched the excellent documentary “The Two Escobars” or more recently the Netflix series “Narcos,” then you are familiar with Pablo Escobar. But are you aware that his son is actually a very respected architect? He credits the profession for saving his life. Good interview with him here.
  • The latest Architectural Billings Index is out and it starts 2017 in negative territory with a score of 49.5. (Slightly below the break-even of 50.) However, the new project score was a smoking 60, up from 57.6 last month. Overall the positive vibes continue and the analysts who monitor this still feel pretty good. If there is a worry, it’s that “real time” conditions are a bit soft right now, but that is the adventure of the start of the year where weather, budgets and holiday hangovers wreak havoc with schedules.
  • Last this week, glazier certification is back in the discussion. AMS, the group that the industry uses for IGCC, SGCC, NACC certification and more, held a summit in Las Vegas with the Finishing Trades Institute to begin dialogue on individual glazier certification. There’s a lot of passion for this process from many different areas of our world, and finally getting some movement is exciting. But there’s no question this is in its infancy and there is a long road to go.

Read on for links and video of the week…

Max Perilstein 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.

I had a few discussions this past week about advanced technology in our industry, and how it is or isn’t being adopted or grown in the architectural market. This is a massive frustration for me. I have always been an enthusiastic early adopter of new technology and see the value. Unfortunately, the people that really can control the end results of these new products are completely opposite of me.

What is the answer here? How do we get more push? Interestingly, if you ask people from outside the industry, they’ll blame us, saying we don’t innovate. But we do. We have amazing glass products that can hit numbers never seen before and are an active part of the structure. There’s now framing that allows the glass to actually perform as expected, not decreasing its values thanks to make up. And there are plenty of other components that help the assembly as a whole soar.

So, the products are there, but the mass adoption continues to be slow. What are we missing?

Elsewhere…

  • Saw a tidbit online that made me feel good. Residential building starts in 2016 posted its best year since 2005-2006. With the commercial industry running a year behind the residential side, this surely shows that the positivity should continue. Residential starts have grown now for seven straight years.
  • One area I failed to mention in depth during last week's BEC recap was the always extremely helpful presentation by Dr. Tom Culp. I seriously think his presentation should be streamed to the entire industry (hey, there’s an idea!), because it absolutely affects all of us. One word that really stuck for me throughout Tom’s presentation was “daylighting.” That surely seems to be an area of serious focus going forward and obviously our industry has great options for that. Though you still have to focus on the energy side, so a happy medium between great daylighting and high performance is a must.
  • The rocky run for the AIA ontinues. They are still dealing with the fallout of their post-election press release and then they ran into another issue when they laid out their keynote speeches for their upcoming show. They did not initially include any women in the program. After heavy backlash, they did add a panel on day three, but the damage was done. If you want to get a feel for how some of the membership is feeling, check out the article on the situation and spend some time in the comment section. Very interesting. 
  • For my marketing friends, just a heads up, Twitter is making more changes including hiding some “low quality tweets” during conversations. One thing that is not clear is how Twitter will determine quality, but if we have learned anything from Google and their programs, the rules will be changing constantly. Never a dull moment when you are trying to be active in the social and online realm.
  • Last this week, now that I am addicted to Netflix (the ability to download so I can watch while I fly is awesome), I found a work reason to use it. There’s a new series on there called "Abstract: The Art of Design," and it’s a documentary series that follows different designers, many of which are major players in the commercial architectural world. So, in between me binging on “House of Cards,” I will have some work to watch….

Read on for links and video of the week…

Max Perilstein 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.

The latest Building Envelope Contractors Conference is now in the books, and the biggest news coming out of it was the announcement of a joint task force between the National Glass Association and the Glass Association of North America. The charge for that task force is to explore the options to work more collaboratively and possibly combining the two organizations. This is HUGE. I have been firmly in the camp of pushing a combined entity for a long time. Both organizations are favorites of mine, and I have been involved with both for many years. I know the pros and cons of both. And I can tell you this is a perfect match. From an industry standpoint, we need a more efficient and effective approach to events. We also need to have a clearly defined voice. And that’s just the start. This collaboration also has the ability to supercharge our training and education needs, something that is a massive issue for our world. We as an industry need this, and full credit goes to the leadership of both groups for starting this important process. Obviously, this is just a jumping off point, but I am hopeful this will grow into something great.

So, back to the actual BEC Conference recap…

 

  • It was a very strong event, and first congratulations have to go to Gus Trupiano of AGC Glass Co. North America, who is the chair of the division and driving force of the conference. Gus is not only an incredibly nice person, but a great leader as well. This was his first BEC in charge and he delivered a tremendous event.
  • The content this year was very strong, there was something for everyone. Julie Schimmelpenningh of Eastman delivered a fabulous keynote speech despite crazy technical interruptions. The keynote is a tough spot, but Julie nailed it. I thought that Matt Johnson and Paul Gary were super on the legal piece, and world famous architect James Carpenter really was a fascinating guy to listen to. The celebrity keynote was from former NBA player Mark Eaton, and that too landed nicely, with a memorable approach, and one that had many attendees debating some of his core messaging long after he was done.
  • I had the amazing honor again of moderating a panel. This year it was a glazier challenges theme, and my panelists were simply awesome. While I think the theme was meant for other glaziers in the crowd to learn from their peers on stage, I learned a ton during their session, and my respect for everything the modern contract glazier has to deal with grew immensely. Thank you, Bill Sullivan, of Brin, Stephanie Lamb of Giroux, Ted Derby of LCG and Joe Clabbers of National Glass. You all are incredible credits to our world, and I am grateful for what you all do.
  • To finish this post off, I will cover some of the folks I ran into at BEC. Remember, the big key of BEC is the networking. If you go to this and you are not making friends, you are doing it wrong … (and if you are not going, be there next year!)

 

Bill Coady of Guardian Glass let me know this will be his last BEC, as he’s retiring soon. That is a loss for Guardian and for all of us. Bill is the epitome of a class human being. He has great knowledge and care, and he will be missed. Enjoy retirement, my friend! While still on the Guardian track, I met Samer Abughazaleh for the first time, and that was enjoyable. He is a very interesting guy who probably was wondering what I do in life. (Don’t worry Samer, most people are still trying to figure that out, too).

Jon Kimberlain of Dow is always a favorite visit for me. He’s incredibly smart and put together, I just want some of that to rub off on me. Another example of smart? Dr. Tom Culp and Urmila Sowell meet that description every time. I thank them again for all they do for our world.

It was great to see a smiling and healthy Greg Oehlers of TriStar, along with his cohort Rob Carlson. Thanks for noting you read the blog Rob; I appreciate it! Speaking of reading, Cameron Scripture of Viracon always gives me great books to read, and he did it again this time. And yes, he still has those movie star good looks! I was also able to congratulate Ron Hull of Kuraray in person on his new position.

It was nice to talk for a few minutes with Joseph Holmes of EFCO, as well as my old friend, the incredible Shelly Farmer of SC Railing. Catching up with past co-worker Bob Cummings of Hartung will never get old for me, and same with talking sports with Joe Carlos of Triview. And speaking of guys named Joe, Mr. Erb of Quanex was there, and he always has a smile on his face and positive approach. I always am in awe of the talent of people like Heather West and Rich Porayko. They do things every day that make our industry (and the groups they work with) look great and that is appreciated.

I had the pleasure to meet GlassFab’s Barbara Russell for the first time, and was able to visit with Mike Goldfarb, too. That company just recently passed the 10-year milestone in business, and the sky is the limit for them. Clover Architectural Products Tom O’Malley is always a constant at events like this, and I think he knows more people in the crowd than anyone, so getting 5 minutes with him was a great deal for me.

There were many more folks that I just can’t get to here…maybe next post! In any case, this was a good event that served its purpose once again. I look forward to the next opportunity to network and learn amongst the best and brightest in our industry!

Read on for links and video of the week… 

Max Perilstein 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.

The GANA BEC Conference, one of the major events in our industry, is this week in Las Vegas. I have been fortunate enough to be involved with this event for many years, and while so much has changed in our industry and world, the key advantage of this conference remains: the incredible ability to network. Yes, the education is great and the speakers are usually very engaging, but the chance to see people from companies up and down the supply chain--all in one place--is huge. Basically, it’s one of the two times in our industry (GlassBuild America being the other) where you can attend an event that allows you stay on top of everything happening in our world. I’ll have my annual breakdown of all the takeaways of BEC next week…

Elsewhere…

  • One group of people and company I like visiting with at BEC is Viracon. And I have to pass major props to Kelly Schuller and every employee there for their incredible charitable contributions. Viracon employees donated an incredible $108,692.60 to the United Way in 2016. This is simply awesome and everyone involved there should be commended for the effort.

  • Time to look at the latest Glass Magazine. First what got me was the cover shot: a beautiful classic looking project in Montreal; it looks old school but performs like a 2017 champ. That led to a fantastic story from Katy Devlin that not only broke that building down, but others as well, as the battle for advanced energy performance in buildings continues. There are several other stories that are worth checking out as well, and I plan on calling them out more in the next few weeks, including the look at the I-Codes and how we as an industry should be approaching them. Whether you get the magazine or grab it online, make sure you are checking it out; too much important content to miss!

  • Ad of the month is actually a tie. Loved the effect of the TGP ad as soon as I cracked open the magazine. Slick, 2-page spread with a catchy picture and tagline. Nice! But I also really liked what Schuco did with the use of old computer discs. Basically pushing the idea of don’t get left behind. While many do that sort of ad, this particular visual worked for me and caught my eye.

  • Check out this video from Guardian. It is undoubtedly a promotion video on their work in the Middle East, but it’s a great quick watch with stunning views of the buildings and facades in that region. Being the glass and glazing geek that I am, just seeing some of these projects is really breathtaking. Plus, I love looks at other plants and layouts. Good watch for sure and a VERY well done video. Wish I had those skills!

  • For my fellow road warriors, did you happen to see the airplane row of the future? Check out this link and let me know what you think. This looks to be too advanced for the stodgy airline industry…

  • Super article here on the “death” of Facebook. I know many who feel the same way.

  • Last this week, Super Bowl. WOW. I mean, that was beyond words. I feel for my friends that are Falcon fans; tough loss. Happy for folks like Steven Brenner and Brian Shaw: big time Pats fans who are on cloud nine right now. Commercial wise, they were pretty awful all night. 5 million for 30 seconds, and the lack of creativity was stunning. The folks doing creative for ads in Glass Magazine are loads better. If I had to choose a few "winners," I would say the Tide, Kings Hawaiian, Spud McKenzie, and Ford "Stuck" commercials were best with decent efforts by Buick (Cam Newton) and the live Adam Driver spot. Still I gotta think these agencies have to go back to the drawing board for the future.

Read on for links and video of the week…

Max Perilstein 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.

After starting the new year with lists, trends and reviews, I had a bunch of other items piling up. It's time to do some catching up with a handful of different industry-related takes.

  • The National AIA show is changing its name. It will now be known as the AIA Conference on Architecture, and it’s a part of a bigger rebrand. The questions are: will it actually make the show better for the exhibitors? And, will it help the AIA recover from the continuing membership angst over the infamous press release after the U.S. Presidential election? (Read more about the backlash.

    My initial answers are "no" and "no". This show will always be about architects getting their educational credit. Between a lack of time and desire, a legitimate visit to the floor is often just not in their plans. Plus, as long as the AIA has a floor with companies desperate to get a visit from a real live breathing architect, there will never be meaningful change in the schedules to even give folks a better chance.

    As for the “revolt,” it surely seems to be real, as there’s still a massive dialogue featuring people that are talking about not renewing their membership and using this issue to point to other deficiencies inside the organization. We’ll see in April in Orlando (a traditionally awful tradeshow town anyway) if anything really has changed other than the name.
  • Thanks to the folks at Azon who tweeted out a link to the Top 10 countries (not including the United States) for LEED usage.

    It was a stunner for me to see that the No. 1 on the list wasn’t my awesome friends in Canada, but China. Yes, China is now at the top thanks to obviously some massive projects. They had 1,600 fewer buildings, but still produced more square meters of LEED than Canada. Don’t worry, my friends in the North, you are always No. 1 on my lists.

  • GlassBuild America formally announced dates for the 2017 event in Atlanta. Be there Sept. 12-14! As always, I believe it will be a fantastic show. (I’m obviously biased. I work it; I love it). But, I was very pumped to see that the GANA Fall Conference will be held during/at the show as well. That is huge. As an industry guy, the tough thing is the expense of travel to all of the events I want/need to attend. I know I am not alone. By simple collaboration, this sort of move helps so many be more efficient and more active in our industry. Great move, and it adds another angle to an already exciting process!

  • I saw that the NFRC released their new board member list. I laughed a bit, thinking back to the days when my life was consumed with trying to affect change by getting fresh blood in those spots. (My candidate Cliff Monroe would’ve been the best board member ever, that’s for sure). This “new” board looks exactly like the boards and power players from 2006. My only hope is with board members like Paul Bush and Kerry Haglund, excellent people who I know will at least listen to other views. 

  • There’s been a lot of chatter in the construction world on usage of Virtual Reality (VR) and Augmented Reality (AR) in the building and design process, and in the sales funnel. I did a lot of research into AR, and I really like the potential from a sales and marketing standpoint. Pricing is still high, and you have to have a solid sales staff. But my goodness it could be a game changer if used effectively.

  • Last this week, the Super Bowl is now lined up. My condolences to my pal Mike Synon of HHH, who is also an owner of the Green Bay Packers. Tough one. This should be a very good game. As always, I am really looking forward to the commercials to see what 5 million dollars for a 30 second ad gets you these days in the way of creativity and memorable moments. I’ll give you my favorites on next week's post. Also next week, preview of BEC, a great video from Guardian, potential good news for fellow road warriors and more!

Read on for links and video of the week...

Max Perilstein 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.

Last week I covered some of the trends I see really taking off in the new year, so I was pretty pumped to see a report come out that backed one of my predictions. Navigant Research released a study that shows the Net Zero Building movement growing tremendously over the next 20 years, eventually becoming a trillion dollar market segment. That’s trillion, with a T. The good news continued with the expectation that the main areas of growth will be from the glass and glazing segment. As I noted last week, this sort of building is growing because it’s a smart process that produces real results and it’s exciting that as an industry we have great options to be heavily invested in it.

Elsewhere…

  • Twitter can sometimes drive people crazy, especially with some of the insane negativity that can appear there, but I continue to try and find the good in it. Example was Friday during the riots in Washington, D.C., someone posted that there was tons of broken glass and windows all over the area. I replied to that tweet with “Oh to be a glass shop in Washington DC right now…,” and lo and behold a few hours later I see a tweet from Mike Albert showing his company (S. Albert Glass) out on the job, in DC, in the damaged area. Cool stuff and nice to see our industry in action. This is the second riot that I have watched a company I am familiar with jump into action. My pals at Binswanger in Charlotte responded to the riots in that area last summer.
  • Review of the December edition of Glass Magazine. Bethany Stough’s excellent cover story on installation was strong, especially given the severe labor pressure our industry faces. I am sure I am not the only one who walked away from this with an advanced understanding of the options available to the glazing community. And that story really made me understand even better why the installation equipment folks at GlassBuild were swamped. 
  • Also in this issue, Joe Schiavone of CRL had a great Glazier Bulletin like always. Love his work. I am also a huge fan of Mike Burk of GED via IGMA, who had a story on safety and smarts on the fab floor. Plus the recap of the incredible 2016 GlassBuild America just got me pumped for the future. All in all, from front to back, a great issue and must read.
  • The ad of the month goes to Wood’s Powr-Grip for the family approach, featuring Dustin Anderson of Anderson Glass of Waco, Texas and his beautiful family. The message of “bringing you home safe” is something that may be simple, but needs to be reminded daily. Good work there!


A couple non-industry reviews:

  • I recently read “Losing Isn’t Everything” by Curt Menefee. This was an excellent and easy read about the people on the other side of some of sports' most famous plays, and how they dealt with the disappointments of being in the spotlight and known for losing. Some handled it better than others, but all of the stories were very interesting and some actually inspirational. 
  • I watched “The Founder,” which was the story of Ray Kroc, the man best known as the builder of the McDonalds behemoth. It’s an intriguing story in that Kroc is not your typical business hero. And that’s probably why it’s taken so many years to get a movie about him. He was not the brains behind really any of the advancements of the company, but was smart enough to listen and learn from those who had the ideas. From a business standpoint, it’s a great watch, and from an entertainment side good as well since he’s not what you would expect as the guy behind such a happy brand.

Read on for links and video of the week...

Max Perilstein 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.

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