A+W: Reassessing 2023

Dave Cox giving a demo to State Glass from Nebraska at GlassBuild 2023.
Photo source
Dave Cox giving a demo to State Glass from Nebraska at GlassBuild 2023. | Photo: A+W

Date: 18 January 2024

A reflection on GlassBuild 2023 and navigating the technology landscape in 2024

As we enter a time of reflection, reassessment, and hope, I reflect upon our conversations with customers and prospects at GlassBuild 2023 and the year that was. I ask myself about each interaction from GlassBuild 2023, how I can address different people’s/company’s needs through marketing, and how to best tailor my company’s message to be concise, best-in-class, innovative, compelling, and address our customer’s/prospect’s concerns, needs, and wants. That’s a tall order!

When I break down conversations I had throughout 2023, a few themes stick out: inconsistent use of technology in our industry, reluctance to use newer technology, and an apprehension to utilize software for better results. These themes have been consistent since I entered the industry in 2018. I can empathize with each one of these themes, too. I struggled in my personal life with a willingness to adapt to a changing landscape around me. I preferred to read a physical newspaper or magazine over an electronic article. I loved the feel of the paper in my hands, the ink on my hands (from a newspaper), and the sense of accomplishment when I fold the paper up and recycled it. However, I’ve adapted and now read most of my news online.

How can I address the themes listed above? Helping someone overcome reluctance and apprehension can be difficult. In our marketing, I focus on finding a stair-step approach to adopting technology, write customer testimonials to help demonstrate the effectiveness of technology to solve problems (such as the labor shortage, tracking deliveries, etc.), write this blog to explain the use of technology for automation (for example), which addresses the labor shortage, and produce effective yet clear communication and experiences for customers and prospects.

Technology can be overwhelming and intimidating, especially software because it’s so abstract. Start by consulting others in the industry you trust, interview multiple software companies, and work with your employees to understand their bottlenecks/needs/willingness to change/upgrade. To overcome any apprehension, outline a plan for your success, be willing to adapt your process, be open to suggestions, and trust your gut. Maybe it’s time to reassess your willingness to add technology to your company and move beyond spreadsheets and 4-colored forms? In a previous blog (entitled “How to Choose the Right Software System for Your Company” Parts 1, 2, and 3 published in early 2022), I outlined a six-step process to follow when buying software. Check out that blog for a roadmap to buy the right software for your company.

As you begin 2024, I hope you’ll take time to sit with your employees and reassess the year that was, 2023! My ambition through each blog is that you come away with at least one new nugget of information that you can act on, which builds off the NGA’s mission of education. I hope this blog has been helpful for you and leads you into a great 2024!

600450 A+W: Reassessing 2023 glassonweb.com

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