The Real Thing, Sadly

So I heard about this happening to a reader, then another, and I thought “well this might be a thing.” Then I heard about it a few more times, and then it happened to us, so I did some research. And yes, it’s a very big thing. The “thing” in question is the benefits provided by your state’s unemployment insurance program to phony claimants. Fraud is running rampant through most of these state programs. In fact, the Department of Labor estimates that at least $63 billion in improper payments, much of it fraud, have been made since COVID hit last year. What is particularly insidious is that most of this… Read More »

For Glazing Contractors

A few items of note and importance for contract glaziers have made their way across my desk these last few weeks. None of them are really big enough to be a subject of their own blog, but they are items you may wish to know about nonetheless. So consider today’s offer a bundle of blog-itos to snack on. Here goes: A New Type of Insurance: Hidden amid all the COVID coverage in February was the announcement by Travelers Insurance that it was debuting a new type of policy designed to cover general contractor’s project losses. Though there are high deductibles and co-insurance, it’s designed to protect contractors from unforeseen field… Read More »

GlassCast

The “GlassCast” in question is a new podcast that we at USGlass magazine are excited to debut. I have always learned a ton of immediate and life lessons from the people I have gotten to interview over the years and GlassCast is designed to share some of those lessons on leadership and growth in our industry. I was thrilled that Anders Dahlblom, president and CEO of Glaston Corp., consented to be my first guest. He has got a tremendous worldview, which I am sure you will enjoy hearing here. And thanks as well to Western Window Systems for sponsoring this podcast.

There’s a Kind of Hush

This headline makes no sense, of that I am aware, but in a few minutes it will. It’s here because this blog is about two different topics that deserve some coverage. By the time I finished writing it, a connection between the two even revealed itself. First the Hush People There was some sad news this past week that Moe Peterson, who spent much of his career as PPG’s director of technical services, passed away mid-February. Most people in the industry today, (save those who work at Vitro—then PPG—and still see his name on countless documents) would not have known Moe. He retired as director of technical services and product… Read More »

What to Do about 22?

It’s the most common refrain I hear from contract glazing company owners and managers when I ask how they are doing. “We are okay—for now.” “We will be fine this year.” Or “We actually had a good 2020, all things considered and are on course for the same in 2021.” Every single one of these comments, however, is followed by a big BUT. BUT 22?  What about 22? The 22 in question is, of course, 2022, the year when the backlog that was in place before the pandemic hits becomes depleted or close to depleted. As projects move from backlog to jobs in progress to jobs completed, they are usually… Read More »

A Short Take on Shortages

Responsible organizations such as ours are very careful when covering reports of problems in supply chains or scarcities. Get it wrong and you’ve most likely helped create one. (The long-ago Tonight Show host Johnny Carson is generally blamed for starting the great toilet paper shortage of 1973 when he joked about a non-existent one, thereby inciting one.) Pass on reporting on shortages and you’ve kept information your audience needs from them. Questions about deficiencies often come up, and they are being asked in abundance now. Here’s how I answer them. Actual glass shortages are rare. Float lines run 24/7 and, absent a catastrophe or epic fail, their removals from service… Read More »

Planning, The Easy Way

If you and I are alike, we have been inundated, overwhelmed really, by the volume of notices we receive. Information is coming so fast from so many directions that it’s hard to have the time to cull out the ones that are relevant and timely. But now, help is on the way. Frankly, that culling and sorting by relevancy is one of our company’s main functions as a glass information provider. As you know, we provide daily e-newsletters for the industries we serve, such as this one. But sometimes, you just want to know what is coming up this week, or what you will miss if you don’t know about… Read More »

What’s Essential Nowadays?

Throughout the pandemic through which we are living, there has been a lot of confusion and ignorance around who or what is considered “essential.” For companies, being considered essential has meant the difference between being able to stay open or be closed in some states. For individuals, it can determine when you will have access to the COVID-19 vaccine. So it was with all this in mind that I studied the Department of Homeland Security memo issued December 16, 2020 titled “Advisory Memorandum on Ensuring Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers’ Ability to Work During the COVID-19 Response.” The memo details which workers, by function, are considered essential during the pandemic. This… Read More »

Lasting Impact

Last blog—of the year that is. So I have spent most of the weekend thinking of how to accurately describe this year and capture the lessons it taught us. Can anything really do that? I doubt it, but I am going to try. I am writing here of the pandemic in general because far too many people have had their health, or that of their loved ones, affected. Far too many have watched loved ones wage and lose a war against it. I am sorry for all these losses. Those of us still here have aged more than a year since last December. What COVID has is the extraordinary ability… Read More »

This is Us

It’s no secret that the architectural glass industry has been a consistent and long-term adaptor of much of the new technology developed for automotive glass. Tinted glass, for example, was originally developed for automobiles. The rotatable magnetron, which was originally used to place coatings on glass, was developed by an auto glass fabrication company from Michigan. Today, its successor technology is used to provide a number of different coatings, including low-E coatings. But these inventions pale in comparison to what is coming now. Let me explain. Apple, yes the Apple of iMacs, iPads and iPhones, filed a patent application in late August that will identify cracks or other imperfections in… Read More »

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