Field of Vision May/June 2020

Why I’m Bucking the Trend

By Tara Taffera

Dislike me if you want, but I hate the phrase “the new normal,” especially when it comes to referring to our current world. In fact, hate is too soft of a word—I despise the phrase. That doesn’t mean I am in denial, because there are some valid reasons why I have these feelings.

I and our entire editorial staff have reported on COVID-19 and its impacts since early March, and one thing has been universal: There are no common trends among all the industries we cover—auto glass, flat glass, doors, windows, glass and window film.

Normal has patterns. Mean-while, nothing about this is normal—and common patterns are hard to find. Case in point, I spoke to a window film company owner on Tuesday May 19 who reported his business never slowed down, and he just opened his lobby again to customers who continue to file in. On the flip side, there are those fearful of leaving the house who stay home, and those concerns are valid as well.

I am in no way making light of this, as I know there is a very real flip side—a devastating one. AGRR has reported on companies that have had to make layoffs, and that includes companies of all sizes, up and down the chain. From time to time this is necessary, but based on the current circumstance, there is nothing normal about the major layoffs some of these companies are having to make.

Here’s what is normal: the industry will bounce back–it always does. I have worked at AGRR’s parent company for more than 21 years, including through the Great Recession and 9/11. The re-cession was incredibly tough for all of you—but you clawed your way back and, before COVID-19, many of you were reporting re-cord numbers.

Are things tough—absolutely! Could it take years for some companies to come back? Unfortunately, yes. Will we travel a little less, work from home more, and think before we shake every-one’s hand? Maybe. But we will get back to a more normal state of things with some changes built in. Shouldn’t we always adapt to change that is thrown at us? That’s true of any major event we survive isn’t it?

I say yes. Even if you disagree with my definition of normal, I hope you will adapt to the changes taking place as you have all the others that have come before it. In fact, I know you already are, based on the conversations I have had with many of you and the extra safety and cleaning measures you have put into place.

And to help you along the way, this issue of AGRR is a great place to start. We received numerous submissions for this edition of the Annual Guide to New Products (see, page 16). So go through it, mark it up, find the products that can help take your business forward, and be ready for when things are on the upswing again—because it will come back and the industry will survive. I hope that is one thing we can agree on.

TARA TAFFERA is the editorial director of AGRR magazine/glassBYTES.com.
ttaffera@glass.com

To view the laid-in version of this article in our digital edition, CLICK HERE.

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