All the news on the economy trending toward the negative can wear you and your co-workers down. The construction and our glass industry have been down. All companies have made changes and adjustments.
There are small signs of rebounding segments in the economy. It’s time to turn our mindsets, energies and strategies to the positive. The glass industry saw unprecedented growth during the last construction cycle run-up. People like to live, work, and play around the products and installations our industry produces. This exciting trend did not go away, it just slowed.
All industries go through peaks and valleys, along with down cycle economies. Ours will rebound, and it starts with us! We need an all-industry push to "Grow glass!" We have a multitude of great products for many applications. We need to showcase our products and educate our markets on the exciting ways to use them.
Like “Got milk,” it should be “Got glass.” We have the most innovative and differentiating products in the construction market. Showing these products, samples, colors, textures, specialty aspects and performance characteristics is fun!!
The more we educate consumers and show off our products, the faster our industry rebounds. Do renderings of what a new front or façade could look like and get them in potential customers' hands to think about. It works! The potential in the solar energy market is massive. Glass companies must stake a claim and make it our market. The remodel and retrofit of old energy-wasting systems is another potentially huge market.
Tired old showrooms and marketing literature won’t cut it. Let’s spiff it up. Every time we have any interaction with customers we should introduce, explain and use visuals of the exciting new products and systems.
Glass products made it into bathrooms to a high level of success. Now, how about kitchens, walls, floors, ceilings, and hallways? We have awesome innovative new products for homes and offices. What about glass doors in homes? In Europe and Japan it’s very prevalent, but not in the U.S. -- yet!
Just had a restaurateur tell me how his exciting use of glass increased his wine sales and business overall. Glass adds value and business. It’s cool, trendy and makes you feel good.
Learn from our vendors. They have great varieties of offerings and applications. Why wait around? Let’s market and sell. Re-energize and train our people on promoting glass. We need to be up with the positive and "Grow glass."
--Robert J. Trainor, chief executive officer, Trainor Glass Co., Alsip, Ill.