Volume 48, Issue 3- March 2013


Taking the Reigns
Leadership is Key for Contract Glaziers

The Glass Association of North America’s Building Envelope Contractors (BEC) Conference happens this month and one of the key presentations is by nationally known leadership “coach” Rich Drinon of Drinon and Associates. Drinon has been helping people develop their leadership skills in a rapidly changing world for most of three decades. He has focused much of his recent time on a concept he calls “flux management” or situations in which rapid change challenges many of the tried-and-true management philosophies established in the last century. With the advent of advanced technology and the overall increase in the speed of everyone’s work life, among many more factors, flux management is a situation in which many leaders in the contract glazing industry find themselves.

“The head-spinning speed of change in our economy is making chaos a defining feature of today’s workplace,” explains Drinon. “The resulting chaos can create greater tension or breaking points between companies and customers, employer and employees and leaders and followers. Flux leaders are part of a new breed who are able to thrive in a chaotic environment that calls for openness, flexibility, adaptability, know-how and decisiveness.”

Today’s Lessons
Leaders must make far-ranging, large-issue, strategic choices, while managers are faced with day-in and day-out decision-making on a wide variety of matters. Furthermore, change is occurring at an exponential rate. Today’s learning curves are shorter than ever, and there are more of them to navigate. Throw in the challenges of more activities with less time and the shifting nature of projects and jobs in the construction industry, and most company or shop leaders are faced with a no-win scenario.

At the BEC Conference, Drinon’s goal is to make sense of the chaos and give attendees an experienced set of tools to cope with the flux leadership required to be successful in the new age of construction in North America. Attendees will explore relationship building in the framework of connecting, communicating and collaborating with others, as well as approaches for getting results, promoting change, solving problems and making decisions within their respective company. Furthermore, leaders will be able to most effectively convey new goals and direction while inspiring cooperation and collaboration.

Specific Intentions
Seem like heady stuff? It can be. Drinon, however, is a plain-spoken presenter who removes the “all flash, no meat” approach. His interactive session, with many questions taken from audience members, will convey an assurance that not only does he know what he is saying is true, but that it also offers understanding of the situations faced by many glaziers.

Our goal with the BEC Conference this year is to give glaziers a better understanding of the issues they face in our industry—from leadership challenges and financial obstacles to government intervention and regulations that may or may not seem optimal to anyone’s interests. Attendees will notice that this year’s conference “feels” different and offers much more meat. We hope you are one of the attendees in the crowd to experience this newer, better version of the BEC Conference with us.

Brian K. Pitman is the director of marketing and communications for the Glass Association of North America in Topeka, Kan.

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