Door and Window Musings
by Tara Taffera
October 1st, 2010

Insights from AMD

The introduction for our lead story this week is the quote, “If you’re in this room you get a gold star because that means you’ve survived [the housing downturn and recession].”

And I think it’s so important to remember that I wanted to start this blog with that same quote as I share some of my observations from today’s seminars that were part of the Association of Millwork Distributors Annual Convention.

For some companies in particular, today’s market is so tough that sometimes you just have to remind yourself of that simple fact, “I’m still here. My company is still here.”

In fact it’s something I also heard while waiting today for a seminar to start. I heard one supplier tell another attendee, “Many of my customers aren’t in business anymore.”

And, sadly, when the meeting was over today I came to my room to work on today’s newsletter and came across an article about a century-year old lumberyard that may be closing.

Just in case you think I’m feeding into what one of the presenters today called “the loom and doom media” I want to point out that I don’t believe I am.

On the contrary, the seminar I enjoyed most today and that really energized me was that of Dr. Rick Johnson who talked about how to sell during an economic recovery. At first glance the title of that seminar may seem like a lot of hype and may make people skeptical, at least that’s what I think it did to a few attendees I overheard talking today.

When looking at the seminar title, two attendees joked, “That seminar will take about one minute. Keep cutting your price to meet your competitor or go out of business.”

I hope they attended the seminar because it really did energize those in attendance.

“Take calculated risks,” said Johnson. “Don’t let fear hold you back.”

“You must listen to the customer and become solution providers.”

“Any salesperson who doesn’t do their homework should be shot. You must always think, ‘What’s in it for the customer?”

Those were just a few insights he shared with attendees. I know it gave me a lot to think about and it definitely didn’t leave me in a gloom and doom mindset.

Hopefully tomorrow has more positive news in store.

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