Business Is Not So Important After All

I worked for CRL for nine years, and my average week was 60-plus hours. When I joined Floral Glass, my hours actually increased for the first five years but then began to taper off as I had a great team, I was getting a little slower, and my kids discovered Little League.

When we sold Floral, I retired to spend more time with Elaine, my kids and our family. Why am I saying this today?

We lost Elaine’s mom on Saturday. She was 93 and lived a good life with a peaceful ending. I’d like to go like that.

Now for the reason to write this…I urge you to spend as much time with your family as you can. That one extra thing you want to do in the shop is less valuable than helping your kid with his homework. Seeing your daughter in the school play is better than slogging through mud at a jobsite. Take the time to smell the roses. You may not get the same deal Elaine’s mom did.

Holy Cow!! Summer Is Over Already?

Sure is. I thought summer would be over when the Mets are in the World Series, but this year, summer ended normally—on September 21, with the Mets going… oh well, back to glass.

Have you set up your autumn displays in your showroom? Do you have some colored leaves sprinkled on your shower doors? Do you have shower doors in your showroom? Your customers are thinking about the home improvements they want to make before Thanksgiving and Christmas. Are you ready for this profitable business? Confirm your table top pricing with your fabricators. Get samples of various thicknesses, edges and tints of heavy glass. Even though the mirror business has generally declined, you should be ready with regular, tinted and ultra-clear mirror samples. 

Have your ads been placed for a Columbus Day sale or a World Series sale? Are you getting ready for your Thanksgiving sale? How about giving a coupon for a free turkey with each shower door sold? (Please, no turkey jokes about my Mets). You can do a Halloween promotion, where any customer who comes in wearing a costume gets a discount on a table top. It doesn’t matter what the item is—get a local radio station to promote your costume parade, and you have a winner.

Are you getting ready for the influx of orders for replacement patio doors that have failed over the summer? How about all the screen work that comes in when people take off their screens and store them for the winter? Are you advertising that you have energy savings windows just as the cold season begins? 

Now is the time that every retailer gets ready for the holiday rush. They want their stores fixed up and ready. Are you advertising in your local papers that you help retail stores get their showrooms up to snuff? Do you have information on non-glare glass for storefronts? It is real pricey stuff, but that sure is better to sell than real cheap stuff. Ask your fabricator if they stock it. How about shelving? Are you ready to supply glass cubes or glass shelves? Do you have mirrors for dressing rooms in clothing stores?

Fall is the time that door closers become real important. There is more customer traffic in stores, and combining that with lower temperatures brings owners wanting their doors opening easily, closing quickly and securely.

Are you ready to sell gift certificates? How about tools to the do-it-yourself market. Don’t try to compete with Home Depot. Sell what you have in stock, at roughly double what you paid for it. Buying at your shop makes it professional grade, which many DIYers want.

Do you have your Saturday hours posted and do your employees know which Saturdays they will be working during the holiday season? Be ready; I have read many reports saying this shopping season will be better than last year. Be ready to get your share of the direct holiday business and your share of the work getting retailers ready for the season.

And by the way, have great Holidays.