Field of Vision
from the editor
We Will Survive
by Penny Stacey
If you attended Auto Glass Week™ in Memphis, Tenn., in September, or
if you read our review of the event (see page
22), I think you will agree there was a certain feeling of positivity
in the air throughout the week. Attendees and exhibitors alike were optimistic,
looking to the future with hope. And while speakers definitely addressed
specific industry issues and struggles, many of the seminars focused on
an exciting topic: growth. From hockey legend Mike Eruzione, who spoke
about expanding your business and using teamwork amid the toughest struggles,
to Kelly McDonald of McDonald Marketing and Lauren Fix, the “Car Coach®,”
who addressed new marketing techniques, growth was a recurring theme.
My publisher, Debra Levy, summed it up well with this quote: “I think
everyone could see, to paraphrase Mark Twain, that reports of the death
of the auto glass industry have been greatly exaggerated.”
Yes, the auto glass industry has proved that it will survive. Don’t get
me wrong; I know it’s a difficult market and there are still strides to
make in many areas of the industry, but I also think there are a lot of
businesses out there today proving that marketing is key and profit is
possible, and many of these were present in Memphis.
I often have readers tell me they’d like to attend an event like Auto
Glass Week but can’t afford to get away from the office; but I think anyone
who was in Memphis in September will tell you that the knowledge they
took away from the event was well worth it, and they will survive the
obstacles before them.
If you’d like to see some real-life cases of true survival amid a tragedy,
I hope you’ll also turn to page
34 and read about how auto glass businesses in the small town of Joplin,
Mo., are handling the recent F5 tornado that not only wiped out a large
part of the town, but also took away family members and in some cases
disrupted the distribution chain.
And I’d be remiss not to mention the article on page
28—a look at an industry legend, Ray Asbery, the founder of Equalizer
Industries, who passed away unexpectedly in September, leaving a void
in the industry. I remember at an industry event a few years back that
Mr. Asbery told our then-video producer and me about where he grew up,
in a small town in Kentucky. What he didn’t tell us is that he started
out in the auto glass industry as an installer, began inventing his own
tools, and founded a business that now is known throughout the world for
its innovations. That is survival. Be sure to read the many, many remembrances
of Mr. Asbery that have been shared, and please add your own by visiting
our online message forum, available on www.glassBYTEs.com™.
I’m sure you have survival stories of your own, tips for enduring daily
struggles and more—and I’d love to hear them. Please email me at email@example.com.
Also, be sure to mark your calendars now for next year’s Auto Glass Week™,
which will be held September 20-22, 2012. Stay tuned to glassBYTEs.com™
for the location.
Penny Stacey is the editor of AGRR™ magazine. Email her at firstname.lastname@example.org,
follow her on Twitter @agrrmagazine, read her blog at http://fortherecord.agrrmag.com,
and read her updates on Facebook by searching for AGRR Magazine.
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No reproduction of any type without expressed written permission.