Business Sense: Getting Involved in the Stone Industry Community

By Katherine Gifford of Moraware

If you’ve ever needed an answer to a question or were looking for advice on a certain fabrication problem, you’ve most likely found the various resources out there for fabricators.

But, if you haven’t explored any of these yet – don’t feel left out! In this post, we’re going to dive into what those resources are, why they’re a great addition to the community, and why it’s so important for you to get involved.

Am I the only one who’s experienced this?

No way! If you’re facing some sort of challenge, it’s almost a guarantee that your peers have gone through the same thing at some point. Whether it’s a bottleneck in the installation process or the labor shortage struggle, we’re all in this together. Check out the Stone Fabricator’s Alliance where industry professionals like yourself come together to “learn, share, prosper.”

Why take the time out of an already jam packed schedule to participate?

Searching through the public forums, you’ll see a variety of helpful discussions and have access to insightful ideas to implement in your own business. Becoming a member also enables you to educate others with your experience which produces a strong sense of community among fabricators. One of the best ways to describe this comes from the SFA site itself, “We will strive to perfect our craft by continuing education and developing our individual skills, always sharing the experience.” In these forums, you’ll gain insight from your fellow fabricators and contribute to the movement by sharing what you’ve learned in your own journey.

Is it true that we can always be improving?

Can’t say absolutely loud enough. Want to improve your profitability? Or some part of your shop’s process? Employee retention? The use of technology? These topics and many more are part of various industry educational events that happen throughout the year every year.

The Natural Stone Institute and Stone World Magazine are two industry giants that have come together to create the Stone Industry Education series. With 10 events next year in cities across America, the series brings together a whole network of fabricators, installers, and distributors in the stone industry. A variety of topics ranging from financial benchmarking to management tips are covered by industry leaders at these educational summits.

Another series that we love going to is the Park Industries’ Digital Stone Expos. You’ll learn about digital fabrication but you’ll also get some fascinating shop tours where you’ll see firsthand how a fabricator runs his shop and get some great ideas. Many of the speakers will cover important industry trends and business practices like tracking metrics. Overall, these events are highly educational for anyone in the industry whether or not you work in a digital shop.

We can’t forget to mention the big industry trade shows like Coverings and The International Surface Event. These are great events to network with other fabricators and industry experts while learning all the latest trends.

And it’s worth taking off time from the shop?

If you’re learning something new that will only make your role or the shop better, then consider it an investment. You might be busier when you get back to work, but you’ll have fresh new ideas to implement that will create better success – whatever that may look like for you.

Does Moraware get involved?

We sure do! We’re looking forward to attending many of the events next year, participating more in the SFA, and continuing our relationships with industry leaders like CountertopResource.comInternational Surface Fabricators Association, and many more.

Really, we speak with fabricators so often and our entire purpose is to help them run their business better. And we’re proud of our customers! Our goal is to showcase these journeys and share them with the stone community as much as possible. Whether it’s a StoneTalk interview, a Good to Great video, or a Q&A – we’re looking to showcase as many awesome fabricators as possible and be another resource for this industry.