From the Editor’s Desk: What’s on Your Calendar this Year?
January 1st, 2004

by Janet Arden, Editor
Jan-Feb 2004

Publishing a magazine requires us to work months ahead of the calendar. While you’re reading the November/December issue, we’re writing the January/February issue and planning the March/April and May/June issues and so on.

Running your business requires the same kind of planning. Selecting and stocking tile and accessories, arranging showroom displays, hiring staff, paying bills and taxes, maintaining equipment, and all the myriad details that make your company run. The question in this issue — what resources are helping you plan for 2004?

All indications are that 2004 could be exciting and profitable for the tile industry. Total tile sales have increased by over 8 percent in the first half of 2003 over the same period last year. Sales have doubled in the past seven years. After benefiting from the recent housing boom, the industry sees real growth in the commercial and renovation marketplaces. How are you going to tap this market?

The cover story in this issue, Outlook 2004: The Shape, Size and Color of Things to Come, identifies the large formats, rectangular shapes, and color trends experts see for the industry. In One-on-One, Bob Daniels talks about the reasons behind the demand for tile and why it’s taking market share from other products. How does this information shape your marketing?

Part of your plan for 2004 needs to include your access to the rest of the industry. Have you blocked out time for important industry events like Coverings (March 23-March 26), Cevisma (March 2-6), Cersaie (September 28-October 3) and the CTDA Management Conference (November 4-10)? Events like these give you a chance to view the latest innovations before they show up in a competitor’s showroom, to learn firsthand about new tools and techniques, and to benefit from the informal networking that plays a large role in every industry event.

Have you built training into your employee schedule? Last year 73 people participated in the CTDA Training Seminars offered in just two locations. This year CTDA plans to introduce online seminars making training available to an unlimited number of people.

To really make this information useful, however, you need to integrate it into what you know about your marketplace and your competition. Happy planning!

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