December 21, 2021

Thinking of Christmas Past

By Paul Daniels

I was reading the blog that I wrote this time last year, as 2021 is coming to an end. The last sentence I wrote was, “Cannot wait to see how the post-COVID world turns out.” It seems appropriate to start this one with the same comment. This year has brought us a long way back, but it still seems we have a long way to go.

A lot of the challenges have changed, but many remain. Labor shortages, supply chain issues, wage and product inflation, project delays still exist, to name a few. It was nice to attend trade shows over this year, and they all came off without a hitch. The glass industry has demonstrated that we are an essential business and have shown to be a “successful and agile industry in a time of unprecedented challenges.” Innovations came from the glass industry almost immediately last year, with Corona Guards, testing stations, modified office partitions etc., to help keep business and hospitals open and safer. It is hard to find a business these days that hasn’t been touched by the local glass shop, as employees are protected by many of these innovations.

The glass industry has always been a solutions business, whether it is creating energy-efficient glass or designing a custom shower door. This year has continued to test the industry’s ability to use its experience to innovate. I think we passed the test.

Yes, the economy will change post-COVID. Interior office designs, home offices and new entrance designs will be part of it. Repurposing properties is one of the new buzzwords in architectural literature. If the glass industry continues to be an innovative solutions-based business that services its customers, I think we will do well, no matter what the new normal looks like. Thinking of Christmas future, I still cannot wait to see the innovations the glass industry will bring to the table. From the small local “Glassman,” as Paul Bieber reminds us, to the large manufacturers, they will all help us to continue to succeed. This year, I still can’t wait to see how the post-COVID world turns out.

I want to thank USGlass for putting me on the team and Paul Bieber for sharing his time with me. It has allowed me to keep in touch with old friends and make a lot of new ones.

Thank you. Have a happy and safe holiday.