Be Ahead of Your Time
by tara taffera
People around the age of 50 will tell you, “all this stuff
about going green was all the buzz back in the 70s.” So were the “green
innovators” back then ahead of their time? When talking to a few industry
folks recently it seems many of them were ahead of their time.
Joseph Piglicampo, president of Joseph Machine Co., told me, “My mind
is 20 years ahead. Sometimes that’s not good because you are too far ahead
and your customers aren’t ready for it.” (see article on page
In the software article on page eight, guest columnist Nick Carter, president
of WoodWare Systems, tells the story of AT&T talking about a cloud-based
environment back in the 80s. “The concept of ‘Cloud’ computing has been
around for quite some time. It was a great idea, just slightly ahead of
its time and the required infrastructure,” said Carter.
These individuals (Pigliacampo), companies (AT&T) and concepts (green)
may have been ahead of their time, but the great companies, ideas and
visionaries usually are.
So I encourage you to think ahead. In his column on page six, Michael
Collins talks about how many companies shy away from innovation in this
market. I encourage you to embrace it.
Yes, I know times are tough but I also encourage you to not stay complacent.
In the article on page 38, Ed Kalaher, president of Clear Choice Windows,
says, “For the industry, I think flat will be awesome and I think flat
will absolutely happen. Everybody will be fine with flat.”
Everyone but Kalaher that is. He goes on to say, “I expect explosive growth
and that’s not a wish list.”
This is due to the many things the company is tackling from its small
office in Canfield, Ohio. From social media to video commercials to simply
growing an online presence, all of this, he says, will help with that
So I encourage you to look at these trail blazers and figure out for you
and your company how you can be a leader. Some say flat is the new up
but I’m with Kalaher: why settle for flat?
This Just In
Be sure to see page 20 for the news from the Federal Trade Commission
(FTC) that it settled with five window companies regarding deceptive energy
efficiency and cost claims. It seems the FTC may be trying to send a message
to the window industry.
DWM started following this story several years ago and informed readers
to pay attention to the FTC’s Green Guides to Environmental Marketing
Claims. That was back in 2010, and the commission has proven that window
companies cannot make claims that may mislead the consumer. But I also
want to point out that I know four of the five companies fairly well and
these are organizations that I think many would describe as upstanding
ones. A representative of the FTC even told The Washington Post, “We don’t
regard [the companies] in these cases as bad companies, and these windows
are not necessarily bad windows. Our concern was that they overstated
the extent to which those windows can save energy or money.”
Take some time to look at your marketing materials and make sure they
fall within FTC’s parameters and that they are not misleading—whether
it’s intentional or not.
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