Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy with just doing the work during the day, being “in the business.” Waking up, checking the numbers, making calls, managing people, writing proposals, checking jobs … I like it. I’m happy with that. But sometimes it isn’t enough. Sometimes I want something more. I want to hear about business from someone else, see and hear someone else’s perspective. That helps me gain perspective on my own life in remodeling.
In true junkie fashion, any chance I have to get together with a bunch of other enthusiasts who are hyper about the industry, I jump. Twice a year I buy plane tickets and meet with a national peer group in different parts of the country. We review each other’s company digs and processes, and we talk on the phone or email at least once a month. Also, at least once a year I fly to a national conference to learn from keynote speakers and see the latest trends. And, once a year I go to JLC, right here in the Red House hometown of Providence, to learn and grow professionally (and check out tools.)
I’m lucky however, because once a month, I don’t have to fly, make hotel reservations, or spend time away from my daily responsibilities at our company. Once a month, I make the short trip to our monthly EM NARI meeting where I get mentally and emotionally lifted.
I love it. Last week, for instance, I had the opportunity to go to Divine Stone Works. I was able to listen to a great (but creepy, thanks Dakota) talk on geofencing and cyber creeping, eat and drink liberally, meet a couple of new guests from a great design and custom home-building company, and have a very interesting discussion exploring the distinction between just “collaboration” and the concept of “design-build”.
For me, that was the most relaxing and energizing evening I had this past month. Does that make me a junkie? I suppose so, but I’m so thankful for the company I keep.