It’s that time of year where we are finishing up our installations and enjoying time with family and friends during the holiday season. I hope that it’s been a successful year for everyone—not only monetarily—but also, in retrospect, did you do a good job taking care of your clients, and do you feel good about the way you represented yourself and the industry? What will you change for next year? Did you see what worked and what didn’t work? Did you spend too much time working and not enough time for you and your loved ones because it was such a busy year?

It’s a good time to reflect on business and life and see what you can do to improve for the coming year. It’s tough to balance life and work when you own your business; you work hard to provide for your family, knowing that you spend too much time working and missing some of the opportunities to spend at the kids’ sports or school events. So, during this holiday season make sure to enjoy and relax a bit. 

The holidays also bring out heartfelt goodness, more so now than other times of the year. It's a time for giving, and one great thing about our flooring industry is there are plenty of associations helping to keep our industry thriving and helping those in need. If you feel like you can donate or contribute, here is a list of several organizations worthy of your consideration:

Floor Covering Industry Foundation (FCIF). The FCIF is dedicated to providing financial support to floor covering industry professionals who experience catastrophic illness, severe disabilities or other life-altering hardships. www.fcif.org

George Buckhardt Memorial Foundation. Started by Tony Buckhardt in memory of his father, 100% of donations go to installers in need. An International Certified Flooring Installers Association (CFI) committee will select recipients and monies will be donated as needed. For more information, contact Tony Buckhardt by calling (260) 410-0802; 1709 Production Road, Fort Wayne, IN 46808. 

National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), Youth Scholarship Fund. Every year NTCA recognizes a Contractor member’s son or daughter for outstanding academic and leadership achievements with a scholarship for college or other post-secondary school. Please make a difference in a young person's life and donate today! www.tile-assn.com

National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) Education & Research Foundation. The NWFA Education & Research Foundation (NERF) is a 501(c)(3) charitable not-for-profit organization that exists to further the growth and development of the hardwood flooring industry through research and education. The program was established to help educate future generations of wood flooring professionals about the industry’s latest products, tools and techniques.

Other programs the NWFA sponsors include:

  • Legacy Scholarship
  • Hardwood Federation
  • Industry Advocates Fund

For more information, visit www.nwfa.org.

So from my family to yours, may this holiday season bring you peace, happiness, health and prosperity. And enjoy the food—lots and lots of food!