Tuesday - Friday | August 25-28, 2020

Georgia World Congress Center | Atlanta, GA | USA

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IWF Education: OSHA’s Top 10 Most Common Violations

2. June 2020 09:48
 

 Presented by:

 

 

Sponsored by: 

 

By: Matt Krig, Northland Woodworks Inc.

The following is a list of the top 10 most frequently cited standards following inspections of worksites by federal OSHA from Oct. 1, 2017, to Sept. 30, 2018. OSHA publishes this list to alert employers about these commonly cited standards so they can take steps to find and fix recognized hazards addressed in these and other standards before OSHA shows up. Far too many preventable injuries and illnesses occur in the workplace.

  • Fall protection, construction
  • Hazard communication standard, general industry
  • Scaffolding, general requirements, construction
  • Respiratory protection, general industry
  • Control of hazardous energy (lockout/tagout), general industry
  • Ladders, construction
  • Powered industrial trucks, general industry
  • Fall Protection–Training Requirements
  • Machinery and Machine Guarding, general requirements
  • Eye and Face Protection

What can you do to be pro-active and prepare for your next OSHA inspection? Learn tips during the “Know your OSHA Inspection Rights”session at IWF 2020.

 

IWF Education: Two Types of Designers

14. May 2020 08:49
 

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Sponsored by: 

 

By: Chris Dehmer, Dark Horse Woodworks

Designers can be very talented individuals who have very little business skill whatsoever. In my experience, designers can be grouped into two categories.

True Designers: people whose main source of income is derived from interior design work, space planning and layout.

These people oftentimes provide fairly detailed plans and specifications about their intent for a project. This is the type of design you can provide a TRUE bid for. They are similar to architects in this regard and often have architects on staff.

Given the opportunity to bid on work for a true design professional oftentimes price is not the only reason for selecting a subcontractor.

The other type of designer can be referred to as a shopping bag designer. They show up at the jobsite with a shopping bag full of STUFF: magazine pictures, napkin sketches, stone and wood samples, etc.

It’s a generalization, but these individuals are oftentimes stay-at-home moms looking to do something. However, they can actually be very valuable assets to your company.

To work well for you, it’s important to figure out which category your designers fall into. It’s possible to develop long term relationships with both types of people, but you need to clearly define the process and each person’s role in the process.

To learn more, attend “Working with Architects & Designers on Transitional Projects” during IWF 2020. 

IWF Education: What does storytelling have to do with brand?

28. April 2020 10:57
 

 Presented by:

 

 

Sponsored by: 

 

By: Carla Atkinson, Professional Writer: Atkinson Words

What is your story?

Some business owners are uncomfortable or skeptical when asked this question.

“I don’t really have a story to tell. I just do my work [fill in the blank: plumber, welder, woodworker, electrician, etc.]” or “I just make [fill in the blank: cabinets, tools, furniture, machinery].”

The fact is, every business has a story. Maybe yours is the story of a family business carried on through several generations or a tale of persistence through tough times. Your story may be that your business is your second act — a dream you pursued after an earlier career or line of work.

When you tell your story in an authentic way on your website and social media, in promotional materials or in presentations, people develop more of a personal connection to your business.

Giving people a window into your company’s history can help people to relate to you and trust you, your experience and your ethics.

Your brand becomes not just talking points – “We’re the best at what we do” or “We’re the most experienced ___ company in the business” – but a fully fleshed-out, unique profile that proves those talking points. You take your brand one step farther than a tag line to say, “Here’s the story behind why we’re the best at what we do, and why we’re the kind of  people you can trust.”

So what is your story?

Learn more about how to tell your story during the IWF 2020 session, "Telling Your Brand Story" at the IWF 2020 Education Conference.

IWF Education: Motivation

22. April 2020 12:28
 

 Presented by:

 

 

Sponsored by: 

 

By: Matt Wehner, Co-Owner: Cabinet Concepts by Design

How do you motivate your employees in today’s workforce? What can you do to get them to show up on time for their shift? How do you keep them engaged and on task throughout the day?

There are a variety of strategies to motivate your employees, and trust me, I’ve tried a lot of them. The one that has worked best for me is profit sharing. This is a huge step for any company to take, especially a small shop. I have around 20 employees, and admittedly I was scared to show them our financials, much less share my hard-earned profit with them. But I found that after I did this our sales were up. It actually worked!

Learn more about how I implemented our profit sharing program during my IWF 2020 session, "Employee Benefits: How to Attract and Retain Employees" at the IWF 2020 Education Conference.

IWF Education: What's Your Problem?

7. April 2020 10:36
 

By: Amanda Conger, Executive Director, Cabinet Makers Association

All companies have pain points. What’s yours?

Time Management

From scheduling and project management to finding time to do the business side of running your own business. How do you fit it all in and still have a life outside of work?

 Finding Your Niche

Don’t stretch yourself thin by trying to all things for all customers.  Know your competitive advantage and clearly communicate it to your customers and prospects.

Customers

Sometimes managing the customer’s expectations is the most difficult part of the project. Then when it’s over, how do you ensure that you get paid?

Employees

Finding, keeping, motivating, and staying on task. Do you find yourself doing more because you know you can do it better and without the hassle?

The Unexpected

Disasters, either man-made or natural, will happen. How can you be prepared for the inevitable and unpredictable?

Growth Management

When should you add more employees? When should you buy more equipment? Or perhaps it makes sense to outsource instead

Pricing

How do you price for profitability yet stay competitive?

Vendors

Find the best fit and accept nothing short of your expectations. Form strategic partnerships with responsive vendors and build lasting relationships that add to your bottom line.

Avoiding Burn Out

How do you get back to the pleasure of the craft that got you started in this business in the first place? Get an inside look at how some of the top woodworking shops are continually growing and making significant profits.

Regardless of your particular struggle, you should attend “What’s Your Problem?” during IWF 2020. This round table discussion is a unique networking opportunity to help you learn from others who have been there, done that, and succeeded.

Learn more at CMA’s popular, “What’s Your Problem” roundtable discussion is an opportunity for show attendees to relax, learn and share their problems and solutions with other like-minded woodworking professionals.

 

 
 

IWF Education: “When to Outsource”

30. March 2020 09:48
 

 Presented by:

 

 

Sponsored by: 

 

By: Joe Knobbe, Past President: Cabinet Makers Association

How do you determine the value of and when you should outsource? Whether it’s doors and drawer fronts, the cabinet boxes, finishing, installation, or any other aspect of your production process, you should know why it may or may not make good business sense to do everything yourself.

Just because you can do it doesn’t mean you should do it.

Outsourcing makes a lot of sense for smaller companies, especially those who don’t have the sophisticated equipment to do every type of project. Machinery is a really big investment for smaller shops, so outsourcing the various components is a viable solution, especially for unique projects.

Learn what is right for your business during the "When to Consider Outsourcing" session at IWF 2020.

IWF Education: Understanding your Cyber Risks

23. March 2020 08:06
 

 Presented by:

 

 

Sponsored by: 

 

By: Dominic Vogel, Founder & Chief Strategist: CyberSC

While you are working a building a winning business, cyber criminals from around the world are scheming to steal your data. Be proactive about the projection you need and determine your level of risk.

Most companies are unaware of the high risk they face from cyber attacks. Even the smallest security breach can compromise the trust and integrity between you and your customers, your partners, and your vendors. It might also result in the loss of assets, future revenue, and potentially cause crippling litigation for your business.

Learn what you didn’t know you needed to know about cyber security during the "Cyber Security: What You Didn't Know You Needed to Know " session at IWF 2020.

IWF Education: Making the Leap from Residential to Commercial

20. March 2020 15:24
 

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Sponsored by: 

 

By: Rick Thaler, Former Owner: OGB Architectural Millwork

I’ve been through the transition from residential to commercial work and lived to tell the tale.

I’m happy to report that I would never go back. I like commercial work better, and I find it more rewarding. I get to do the kind of work that turns me on, and at a scale that I find satisfying, and I’ve built a set of systems from the ground up that have served me quite well through the growth of my company.

If you’re considering taking up commercial work, you need to know the answer to this simple question: Why?

Do you want more opportunity? Diversification? More profit? More interesting work? The chance to work with different kinds of customers? All of the above?

These are all good reasons. The key is to do some soul-searching and make absolutely sure you have a good reason.

After all, if you’re happy with what you’re doing, and you’re making the money you want to make, don’t change. Change for the sake of change is not just worthless – it can be downright murderous, and many of the business failures I’ve seen involved people getting out of an area of competence and into one of high risk.

Learn more during IWF 2020 by attending the “Diversifying your Business: Think Outside the (Cabinet) Box” session.