October was a busy month for us, as I’m sure for many of you. There were quite a few industry events taking place, and we tried to attend as many as possible. I headed to Connecticut, on the heels of Marmomac, for one of our Stone Industry Education events, a series of one-day workshops that we organize with the Natural Stone Institute. EleMar Granite & Marble New England not only hosted the event, but also a Wine & Stone session the night before. It was not only educational, but fun! Both events drew a nice audience, and they were engaging which is always encouraged.

I had a day-and-a-half stop home before I left again for New Orleans. This time, I was on my way to attend Total Solutions Plus (TSP) – an annual conference held by the Ceramic Tile Distributors Association (CTDA), the National Contractors Association (NTCA), the Tile Council of North America (TCNA) and the Tile Contractors Association of America (TCAA). This conference, which is always well-attended, provides an opportunity for both education and networking.

Our team came away from both events with a good amount of content that we will be sharing with you soon, and I made some new friends, as well as reconnecting with old ones, too. Two of the many reasons I enjoy attending in-person events.

And speaking of friends, that was the message I took away from both the Stone Summit and TSP. Speakers at both events talked about the importance of aligning yourselves with industry friends – people who you like and like you. While you might be competitors, you can still have a friendly relationship. Having industry friends who can share experiences and even come to your rescue if a situation arises, is invaluable. Unity can only lead to strengthening the industry as a whole. I know the friends myself and the Stone World team have made not only have led to good times and talks, but have also contributed to the superior content we bring you. We’re looking forward to sharing our latest encounters with you soon.