Volume 47, Issue 8 - August 2012


Why Join?
Membership in GANA Creates Opportunity
by Brian K. Pitman

When I attend trade shows such as GlassBuild America, NeoCon or glasstec, I speak to many companies and professionals about a wide variety of issues important to the construction and glazing industries: legal issues, the economy, energy codes, standards development, government regulations and more. And usually, when discussing the efforts of the Glass Association of North America (GANA) and how we are working to increase opportunities in the industry, many companies will ask, “Why should we join GANA or any trade association? What is the benefit?” There are many, but I want to give you five key ones.

Top Five
1. Networking. The top reason any company joins a trade association is for the networking opportunities it provides. Being a member of GANA puts you in immediate contact with the top companies in the glass and glazing industry, including top-level executives, engineers and technical experts, human resources, project managers, glaziers and more. At a GANA event, you often will be in the room with key managers from companies that do what you do, offer products and services to your type of company, and even with customers who buy your product. By being a member of GANA, you put your company in a primary position to network with others on how to be more efficient, solve problems and create opportunities to get ahead. A prime example of this networking is the GANA Building Envelope Contractors (BEC) Conference in Las Vegas in March, or the upcoming GANA Fall Conference in Chicago in September.

2. Education. GANA offers valuable resources for its members to learn better processes and acquire further skills in expanding their knowledge. With courses such as the GANA Blueprint Reading Course, online education through our website at GlassEducation.com, and Glass Informational Bulletins (GIBs) available free to members and more, GANA is always developing better companies in the industry. Furthermore, by networking with other members, companies are able to learn solutions to technical issues, learn about potentially harmful results of code changes and increased regulation, and much more.

3. Marketing. GANA promotes its members, their products and services in a variety of ways. At the recent NeoCon show in Chicago, GANA joined with a group of its members to promote the Decorative Division and dozens of its members’ innovative decorative glazing products to a group of more than 40,000 interior designers and architects. At the upcoming glasstec show and GreenBuild, GANA will be filming interviews with members about their products for release on its website and through social media. Furthermore, consumer websites such as DecorativeGlazing.com and Mirrorlink.org offer product brochures, contact information and more for its members. By joining GANA, you give your company access to an established platform for marketing yourself and creating leads for future business.

4. Standards/technical manual creation. GANA has had a part in crafting various industry standards and test methods in the past decade, as well as technical manuals like the GANA Glazing Manual, considered the industry bible and a must for anyone in the commercial glazing business. GANA has also created more than 30 GIBs for the industry covering a wide variety of topics and issues such as the proper cleaning of flat glass and how to properly read shop drawings. All of these documents were created by GANA members who wanted to make sure accurate information and suggestions for their product types were included to be read by hundreds of thousands in the industry. At the GANA Fall Conference, many more documents and standards either will be finalized or created, and having a chair in the room is a way to give yourself a voice in the documents that guide our industry.

5. Discounts. GANA members can purchase any of our products or register for GANA events typically at a discount of 50 percent. That discount is significant: many of the BEC Conference attendees save more money on conference registration than the totality of their annual dues. Being a GANA member, besides anything else, makes economic sense.

These five reasons to join GANA are a few of the dozens of reasons to join. Investigate membership for your company by visiting our website at www.glasswebsite.com. You may also contact Ashley Charest, GANA account executive, in our office at 785/271-0208. Most importantly, join now to take advantage of these reasons (and more!).

Brian K. Pitman is the director of marketing and communications for the Glass Association of North America (GANA).

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