When do you think talk is cheap versus real? And how can you really tell? When it comes to talking about the economy or the success and quality of business, there’s usually telling signs on whether or not the talk is legitimate. Those signs are when people use words like “hopeful” or “looking like it’s going be…” when you ask them how business is. When times are truly good, the answers are emphatic and energy is real. This past week in Las Vegas at the BEC Conference, the positive nature both in body language and comments were clearly real. So while not everyone is rolling along yet in our industry and we know we have some sore spots, to me I think we are finally, headed in the right direction.
More from the show in this BEC only blog…
-- As for the event itself, it was a major success. I have said all along that events like BEC and GlassBuild America have to be supported and successful for the good of the industry. So if you came to BEC, we’ll see you in the fall at GlassBuild and if you missed BEC, you simply can’t afford to miss GlassBuild now.
-- The speakers at BEC were very strong. And I sincerely learned a lot. Before the conference I had never heard of VUCA. In the presentation from Dick Beuke of PPG, the process of VUCA was explained. VUCA stands for Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity, and Ambiguity. And all of those items have a serious effect on the business climate. Understanding them, working through them, and overcoming them are crucial for success. The other main highlight for me was Mic Patterson of Enclos once again blowing a room of people away. Very insightful and meaningful information that had every attendee talking afterwards. I got to meet Mic in person for the first time after and that was very cool. While we sometimes end up on opposite sides of issues, the respect I have for him is immense.
-- The day 2 Keynote speaker, sponsored by Guardian Industries was Ron Jaworski and he did not disappoint. The energy and enthusiasm he shows on ESPN is not an act. The guy just brings it. And his piece, mixing football stories and business lessons was excellent. It was a speech that those of us who are not Ivy League grads could really grasp and understand, and lessons taught that could be utilized in every day business.
-- At the end of the day all of the speakers brought value and that was huge. Congrats to the brilliant Jon Kimberlain of Dow Corning, who as head of the BEC division did a great job in pulling it all together and making it go. I wish Henry Taylor of Kawneer (past BEC chair) could’ve been there to see, as Henry skillfully stewarded the ship through the roughest waters possible, and he would’ve been excited to see how the show went.
-- As for others I got to see and talk to…. I got to fly in to town on same plane as the Guardian team- all good folks and a company that continues to step up in its support of our industry. One of my new favorites for most intelligent and credit to our world is John Wheaton of Wheaton Sprague. That guy is tremendous and a true plus for our industry. He was on a consultant panel that overall was really insightful including Stephane Hoffman and Tony Childress. That panel could’ve gone on for hours. Also always nice to see the classy Tracy Robbins of Walters and Wolf as well as seeing old friend and sports savant Joe Carlos of TriView. Seeing Dave Helterbran out and about was especially awesome since he’s battled some health issues. He looked great and had that classic smile going as always. Mark Spencer of SAPA was in the mix and I know at least one person did confuse him for football star Howie Long. Running into Garret Henson for the first time in a long time was a pleasure, as well as getting to see his Viracon cohort Seth Madole. The Pacific Northwest is always well represented, especially with the new Washington Glass Association leader Bill Coady of Guardian working the room with style. Seeing and working on the fab panel with my old co-worker Kirk Johnson was a joy as was seeing and talking briefly with his Hartung Glass company-mate Nick David Sciola.
-- The day and half of the event went too fast that there were people I saw that I wanted to talk to and I never could get around to see. Hopefully I will catch up with them at GlassBuild in September if not sooner. Once again though the bottom line is these events matter. Being able to learn and network matter, and if you want to grow your business and yourself- you simply can’t miss these.
LINKS of the WEEK
-- Sitting too long at McDonalds has become a big story of late… here’s the latest edition.
-- Ok friends of mine in Seattle… anyone know the story behind this? Next time I visit, I want to see it!
-- Wow, asking or being asked to the Prom has really changed…
VIDEO of the WEEK
From Wheel of Fortune… guy guesses the word with so little to go off of. Was the fix in???