New year, new feature.
To start, the January issue marks the debut of our new monthly column, Industry Trendsetters. As the name suggests, this series will highlight the movers and shakers in the woodworking industry who are making a difference within their industry segments. The series Leads off with a case study of PIN, a Texas-based store fixture manufacturer focused on implementing new technology and productivity methods in order to stay on the Leading edge of innovation. The article, beginning on page 42, details how--in slightly more than 10 years--this fixture installer grew to become a vertically-integrated, multi-million-dollar manufacturer, supplying chain retailers such as PetSmart and Rent-A-Center.
Not content to rest on its Laurels, PIN continues to be successful because it constantly Looks for ways to improve its processes. In his interview with Assistant Editor Matt Warnock, PIN President and CEO Jeff Pray comments, "[Business] is a big circle. You build your processes, and then you have to go get sales to feed them. Then, when you get the sales, you have to build your processes again. We're always working on the weakest point."
Continual improvement has been a hallmark of next month's trendsetter, office furniture giant Steelcase. Called by some "The Grandfather of Sustainable Design," Steelcase is considered by many to have started the LEED-factory trend and is an advocate of lean manufacturing. HighLighting the February article will be a look at the progress made by the company midway through its 10-year environmental plan.
Also New for 2007
* Red Book Online--Even More Interactive.
The online version of the 2007 Red Book Buyer's Guide will be new and improved, featuring a more extensive searchable database--via pre-selected keywords, company names or by chapters. Enhancing the listings will be videos, spec sheets or catalogs available for viewing by select manufacturers. Also on the horizon for the new www.redbookonline.com will be links to online articles pertaining to select topics and keywords searched.
All this will be in addition to the up-to-date product information you already rely on from the Red Book--information provided by the more than 2,200 manufacturers and exclusive importers of woodworking equipment and supplies Listed--far more than any other industry directory. Also setting the Red Book apart are the exclusive specification charts, available not only in the print version, but also for online viewing and downloading year round. The database includes information on more than 160 industry associations, 150 site selection and economic development agencies, and nearly 100 woodworking education facilities--making the Red Book the most comprehensive database in the industry.
* Cabinet Conference Debuts at Texas Show.
The inaugural national Cabinet Conference: "Manufacturing Strategies for the 21st Century," will be co-Located with the 7th Annual Texas Woodworking Show, organized by Wood & Wood Products and Custom Woodworking Business, and sponsored by Louis and Company. The Cabinet Conference will be held March 7-9, and the Texas Woodworking Show will be on March 8-9. Both will be held at the Dallas Market Center.
The comprehensive cabinet conference will include seminars on manufacturing, marketing and design trends. It is backed by five major trade groups, including the Kitchen Cabinet Manufacturers Assn., Architectural Woodwork Institute, Cabinet Makers Assn., Wood Component Manufacturers Assn. and the Association of Closet and Storage Professionals.
For more information on these events, visit www.texaswoodworkinshow.com.