In-Person Events Boost Sales and Build Relationships, Along with Company Pride
Last week, I had a chance to attend a meeting of the young executive group from the Southern California Glass Management Association, and it had been quite a while since the group had been able to get together. They met at and toured Glasswerks LA, a local tempering company, and Frameless Hardware Company, which is located next door. It was great to see young people who were eager to learn and excited about their futures in the glass business.
As I wrote in my last blog, this group was hungry for knowledge. Although most of them had been in the industry at the contract glazing level for years, many had never actually taken an in-person tour of a glass fabrication plant. As part of the program, each company put on a short educational presentation during lunch that was well received with lots of questions and comments. Everyone showed their appreciation for the time spent as they left for the day.
Important information covered included the amount of skilled people, time and investments these companies make to service their customers to meet their obligations. These young executives now understand and can explain why some things take time to manufacture, and it is not easy to just speed things up. This was an investment in time, but the knowledge and relationships gained will pay that back many times over.
Whether you are a small company or large, you want to take advantage of any opportunity to educate customers in person. Introducing customers to your staff and showing them the investments and effort your organization makes to help them succeed is invaluable.
We are lucky to be in an industry with many support organizations and events where professionals can meet and share knowledge with the next generation. Whether it’s national or local glass associations, trade shows or educational webinars, these are great opportunities to get your employees or customers involved. The more they understand how our industry works, the better they can do their jobs.
This is also a way to build a better culture in your organization. Show that you are willing to invest in education so workers can progress in their careers. In many events I have attended recently, I have noticed that companies are bringing more of their employees to conferences and trade shows — it is not only owners or upper-management that are attending. It can be expensive to attend national events, but local shows and conferences should be necessary. Most trade events offer more education classes and vendors highlighting products on the floor. These are opportunities to build a sense in your staff that they are a part of an organization that values self-improvement.
I will be at Glass Expo Northeast™ next month, and I hope to see you and your staff there.