Sometimes in life, we come across truly professional people. I have been fortunate to know quite a few, many in the floor covering industry, and some who were not. Of those that I have come in contact with, many stand out in my memory. One such person was not an installer, but a territory salesman for a manufacturer.

He was so detailed as to be almost overwhelming. He was always neatly dressed and well-groomed. If anybody in his company knew how to develop a great customer relationship, he did. He knew his products; he knew his competitors’ products (usually better then they did). He approached his job with enthusiasm each and every day. He was paid well, but not, in my opinion, what he was worth. Having known this gentleman was having the pleasure of knowing a real pro.

I also knew an installer who could match this salesman at every point. He too met every characteristic outlined above. He also gave his employer 110% everyday. I have known many in our industry that I would call pros, and I am just as happy to be able to call them friends.

The floor covering installation industry has many real pros. I know a lot of them. An awful lot of them can and will be found doing business with distributor members of FIANA, using products manufactured by FIANA members, and attending seminars sponsored by FIANA members. The seminars are for you, the installers. They help you improve your ability to not only become a real pro, but to maintain a competitive edge over your competition.

Would you like to meet a group of real pros? Then you should have been in Kansas City, Mo., Sept. 7-10, for the CFI 2000 Convention, or from Oct. 4-8 for the FIANA 2000 Convention. There are always opportunities to meet the true cream of the crop in this industry; you just have to set aside the time to do so. So get ready now for next year’s opportunities.

Before I close, I want to introduce you to the pros mentioned earlier in this article. The professional salesman was Bob Hanson of Overland Park, Kan. The installer was Herman Brown of Ft. Worth, Tex. Unfortunately, both have gone on to their rewards, but I bet they are handling it like the pros they have always been.