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MIA+BSI now accepting Pinnacle and Tucker Design Awards entries

Oberlin, Ohio and Chestertown, N.Y.—MIA+BSI: The Natural Stone Institute is now accepting submissions for both the 2017 Pinnacle Awards and the 2018 Tucker Design Awards.

The Pinnacle Awards recognize natural stone industry companies whose works exemplify professional mastery in the use of natural stone. Awards are given in six categories:

  • Commercial Interior (sponsored by Mapei)
  • Commercial Exterior (sponsored by Mapei)
  • Residential Interior/Exterior (sponsored by GranQuartz)
  • Renovation/Restoration (sponsored by Coldspring)
  • Kitchen of the Year (sponsored by Vitoria Stone Fair/Marmomac Latin America)
  • Bath of the Year (sponsored by Vitoria Stone Fair/Marmomac Latin America)

A Grande Pinnacle Award, sponsored by Marmomac, will be presented to the best overall project. The 2017 Pinnacle Awards are open to MIA+BSI members only and will presented at TISE 2018 in Las Vegas.

The Tucker Design Awards recognize design professionals whose projects achieve excellence in the use of natural stone in design and construction. No project categories are required. The Tucker Design Awards are open to any design professional or natural stone industry member on behalf of the design team. The 2018 Tucker Design Awards will be presented in February 2018 in San Antonio.

To access entry forms and submission guidelines for the 2017 Pinnacle Awards, 2018 Tucker Design Awards, or to learn more about the MIA+BSI Awards Program, visit www.naturalstoneinstitute.org/awards.

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Guest column: How to stand out in your family-run business

Expert advises maintaining your identity while contributing to the greater good

November 21/28, 2016: Volume 31, Number 12

By Jacqueline Tabbah

screen-shot-2016-11-28-at-4-09-49-pmThere is a fine line between respecting your family’s business that they’ve built from the ground up and being an innovator. This line can oftentimes feel like a tightrope, but once you make it to the other side, you will achieve a rewarding and meaningful career.

Your first experience working in your family business, you walk in and there is a system in place and this has been in place for year and you are told the system has been working for years. My advice is to embrace this system at first by trying things their way in order for you to earn and build trust. Trust is an essential component in any relationship, not just in your personal life but even more so in a family business. By building trust, you will also learn more about the business and over time you can slowly tweak the areas where you think there is room for improvement.

You also earn trust by respecting your family and the system that has worked successfully for them. It sounds simple but it is so important to treat them the way you want to be treated and acknowledge your differences in how you might approach business. You want to be taken seriously and your family members do, too.

Demonstrate proficiency at all times during office hours by communicating in a professional manner in the presence of employees and customers. The workplace is not the venue to make family jokes or have a heated discussion; instead set aside differences and work together respectfully. When families trust and respect each other, your employees will follow suit because they will see that you are taking your family business seriously.

After these fundamental concepts are established, you can start introducing your innovative ideas. My advice is to start with baby steps. Upgrade your social media game; it costs nothing and can really increase the company’s web presence. You can even reorganize your filing system by simply creating a shared drive or cloud-based system that everyone has access to at all times.

You may want to get involved in numerous local and national groups such as The Natural Stone Institute (MIA+BSI), World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) and National Tile Contractors Association (NTCA), to name a few. Most of the national groups have local chapters. Start locally as your business is local and people tend to do business within their community.

Lastly, think outside the box. Successful family businesses thrive over generations because every person brings something new to the table. Each generation must adapt to fit the times. Learn everything you can from your fathers and mothers and build on that.

At the end of the day, we all have the same goal, to be a loving family and to work together successfully.

 

Jacqueline Tabbah is vice president of International Stoneworks, which has operated in Houston and its surrounding cities, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Antonio and Austin for 28 years. She is slated to speak at The International Surface Event (TISE 2017), WE03—Managing a Successful Family Business Forum on Wednesday, Jan. 18 at 8 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Register online at tisewest.com.

 

 

 

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Women in Stone launches award program, scholarship

Women In Stone LogoOberlin, Ohio and Chestertown, N.Y.—Women in Stone has unveiled two new opportunities to promote the program’s efforts to promote women in the stone industry.

The Women in Stone Pioneer Award will recognize an advocate within the stone industry for their role in recruiting, retain and advancing women. The winner’s performance in promoting women should be exemplary, honorable and inspirational.Women in Stone co-chair Allyson Humphries of M S International said, “The Pioneer Award recognizes an individual who has ventured into the unknown to educate and empower women in our industry.”

Co-chair Kim Dumais of Miller Druck Specialty Contracting agreed. “There are many individuals within our industry who go above and beyond to educate and elevate women. This award has been established to acknowledge those individuals and recognize them publicly for their efforts.”

The Women in Stone Empowerment Scholarship will provide an MIA+BSI member with an all-expense-paid trip to a 2017 industry event (TISE, Coverings or an MIA+BSI study tour). The winner will also be able to shadow industry professionals during the event in order to gain a better understanding of different sectors of the industry. Applicants should be a first-time attendee of the chosen event and should have between two and five years of stone industry experience. “The Empowerment Scholarship is designed to provide an opportunity that otherwise may not be accessible to women in the industry,” Dumais said. “The scholarship offers a unique opportunity to be personally guided, mentored and exposed to all aspects of our industry.”

Humphries added, “The scholarship is the perfect vehicle for the woman who needs a kick start to her career and wants to learn more about our industry.”

Nominations for the Pioneer Award and applications for the Empowerment Scholarship are due by Friday, Sept. 9. To download forms, visit www.naturalstoneinstitute.org/womeninstone.