The show experience shouldn't stay in Vegas, people!
We need to bring the knowledge home. Act on it. And share it.
Change isn't coming… it’s here.
When I got to Las Vegas it was cold. It can get cold in the desert, but I never expected snow.
I’m not talking about a change in the weather though. Some might say the home building industry is set in its ways and slow to adapt. Those in the industry that haven’t embraced change yet, take heed.
Adapt or Die 🔥
While this may seem like overkill, consider the following:
Affordability, Skilled Trades, Tariffs, Land, and Interest Rates.
The time for change is now and that sentiment was echoed at this years show.
The 75th annual International Builders' Show saw its largest attendance in 10 years. The industry is ready!
Culture + Customer Experience
This picture 👆 is the definition of amazing culture. It’s in the lobby of Zappos and yes, that’s a ball-pit we're sitting on. It even transforms into a stage for speakers during events!
Dennis and I had the unique experience of touring HQ with Ryo Hanalei Zsun AKA the “The Culture Maestro”. Ryo’s passion for all things Zappos is infectious.
Every aspect of the building is about creating an impactful experience for Zapponians (not employees) and the many visitors who experience life at Zappos.
"In the age of the connected stakeholder (employees, partners, customers and the communities we serve), your company culture is your brand. Businesses that intentionally create and cultivate a healthy culture and most likely to earn the trust and loyalty of their stakeholders."
Afshar, V. (2017, September 26) - 6 Essential Aspects of Workplace Culture. https://www.huffingtonpost.com
The numbers above are actual average response times. Wow!
Imagine if your team operated like this. How many more sales would you have? And how many more advocates would you gain from this level of service?
This is one part to the much larger puzzle of creating an unparalleled customer experience for Zappos customers. There are seemingly endless examples of the CX focus Zappos implements daily.
"Zappos Isn't a Company - It's a Mission."
An industry example...
Focus on your customers. They're focused on you 🔎
Get Social. Create Content. Provide Value.
I didn’t get on the show floor as much as I’d have liked to this year. The shows success was visible in both its size (600,000 sqft) and attendees (100,000+ people). Despite the mammoth scope of this years show preventing my physical participation, I was able to enjoy some of it digitally.
Social plays an integral role in business today. It's especially valuable in such a large event.
You can’t visit every booth on the floor, space in the village, educational session, networking event, etc. There’s just too much (value) happening at once.
Ex: I wanted to get to Green Banter & Beer.
No worries though as the event was streamed live and also made available via the NAHB Young Professionals Facebook page.
Despite not spending much time on the floor, I found another Adam on LinkedIn. I don’t even know him, but I enjoyed watching his video 👀
The Value of Membership
Follow the sign to NAHB HQ and the NAHB Next Lounge 🛋️
NAHB Young Professionals (#NAHBYP) members were in full effect meeting and greeting attendees and talking membership value.
"I’ll tell you this right now. If you think membership is expensive just consider the everyday expenses to run your business and the ROI produced from each expense. The value of membership is that it's an investment. It cannot be understated and is somewhat unquantifiable."
I remember showing up two years ago at the mid-year board meetings in DC. I just walked into the Young Professionals meeting and sat down. Like life, you get out of membership what you put into it. Get involved with your local, state, and national HBA's people!
My activity on the NAHB Young Professionals Committee affords me the opportunity to work with some of the brightest and most passionate in the industry as we work to shape the future 💪
I'm also on the Convention Education Subcommittee which allows me to have a hand in the programming at IBS. Having dynamic educational sessions is core to the value of the show. I'd love to hear your feedback in the comments below or simply message me.
It's like voting - if you don't participate, don't complain!
This guy is my friend, Jonathan Andrews. We met a few year back at IBS. Jonathan, Quint Lears of NewHomeSales.com, Ricardo Renya of RNL Homes and I sat at a table for a couple of hours at the Young Professionals party that night.
We had just met. Each of us shared crazy goals we wanted to achieve. Jonathan was in real estate at the time, but came to the show to become a builder. Fast forward to today and Hornet Homes is a burgeoning new home builder in Charlotte, North Carolina.
It’s truly remarkable to see what each of the gentlemen from that night years ago has gone on to accomplish today. I owe my friendships with them (and so many more) to the show.
Speaking of, I had the best steak dinner of my life with Mr. Griffith from HPS Management. Thank you, sir!
*bonus points if you know Mr. Griffith's first name
Discomfort = Growth
On one of my last cab rides before the show ended, my friend and co-worker Megan asked if I thought I was an extrovert. While many may see me as one, the reality is it’s not until I feel comfortable with you or my surroundings that I open up. I think of myself as an ambivert.
It might surprise many of you that have met me, but it’s the truth. It’s also something that I used to struggle with. These days I have self-awareness about my personality and work to find comfort in what are sometimes uncomfortable settings.
Going to networking events alone. Raising my hand to participate when others won't because I'm able and also because it’s for the greater good. Being OK with not being great at things I want to get better at.
Growth is hard work. It takes introspection and being open to failure among other things.
I don’t care.
I do the hard things and you can too.
*discussing social media and branding in the NAHB Next Lounge
Improvise Your Way Through Adversity. Even if your business is rock solid right now, history dictates downturns. You don’t need a downturn to face failure if the problem is painful enough. On Thursday the roof of the convention center was leaking on the seating in the NAHB Next Lounge (see photo at the top of this article).
As the rain did its thing, I was talking to people about social media and branding. A few paper towels, some trash cans, and strategic people placement helped keep to the schedule.
We identified the problem and addressed it the best we could while not skipping a beat.
At the end of this years show, my flight home was canceled. I spent the day alone in Vegas and decided to do more things that made me uncomfortable.
All in the name of personal growth. Never stop learning. Never stop growing. ♾️
*scared of heights so I zip-lined like Superman over the promenade
*ate dinner at the Top of the World. My dessert, a date with the edge of the observation deck
Whatever your need for growth, to achieve at a higher level you must challenge yourself. Learn to be adaptable and even the most difficult situations become easier to manage. Get outside of your comfort zone and you’ll be amazed at the feats you’re capable of.
If you know me, this is paramount. I couldn't do what I do without those that support my efforts. My influence is wider because of these individuals. My business is better because of these individuals. And my impact is greater because of them too.
There are too many friends too list, but if you're reading this chances are you're one of them. If you aren't yet and you're still reading - you very well could be.
Thank you, all!
Until Next Year
This year's show was a beast. I feel like 1 out of 10 people I passed in the jammed convention center hallways was mumbling how tired they were (myself included), how there was so much to see (also me), and how the weather took them for a loop (yup, still me).
No matter the expectations going into the show and despite the inevitable difficulties of an event this size, I hope your experience exceeded anything you could have imagined.
"You Miss 100% of the Shots You Don't Take."
I'm curious, what did you learn from this year's International Builders Show?
P.S. Shout out to the NAHB team who work tirelessly to put on an event of such epic proportions! 👏👏👏