You need to be pushy
From the editor
The cycle of life often presents contradictory situations. For example, for the first 16 or so years of your life, you cannot drive a car. Then, overnight, you are old enough to drive a car, according to state laws. You will drive a car for an extended time, 50 years, plus. But, eventually, the time comes when you really should no longer be driving. Don't drive, drive, don't drive. You age and gain experience and wisdom, but your body doesn't respond the way it used to. Your kids and grandkids really want you off the roads.
The same can be said for shameless promotion of what you do well. When you are a child, your parents want you to be proud of your accomplishments. "Show Grandma how well you can sing that pretty song," or "Show Grandpa your outstanding report card." Kids are encouraged to acknowledge, own and be proud of their accomplishments — patting themselves on the backs at every turn. Parents know this builds kids' self-esteem — something our youths cannot seem to have enough of in the age of bullying.
At some point in a child's adolescence, pride in accomplishments is construed as arrogant bragging, and becoming modest and humble is in order. Achieve a lot, but don't talk about it. Quiet dignity in what you do becomes the norm.
Frankly, that needs to change — at least for the masonry industry. The masonry business has so many facets. Think of the many types of suppliers to our industry. Think of how different masonry can be from region to region and state to state. With so many players in our industry, each with a personal mission, an overall theme rings true: We need to promote our industry better.
We, in the MCAA, talk a lot about recapturing market share. This is done on many levels, from local and state, to federal — efforts made on The Hill. But why not participate in a groundswell movement that involved bragging on your material and the benefits of masonry to anyone and everyone who will listen? Talk to your local school board about including masonry in new projects. Work to get masonry specified in governmental buildings. Be a shameless braggart about the most durable, long-lasting building material out there: masonry.
For more information on how you can help increase awareness about our product's many benefits and truly make a difference, contact the office of the MCAA at 800-536-2225.
Much like driving, pride in what we do well should become cyclical: proud, modest, and outwardly proud, once again.
Originally published in Masonry magazine.
About the Author
Jennifer Morrell was the editor of Masonry magazine. She has 20 years of experience in the publishing industry as a writer and editor, covering such topics as real estate and construction, insurance, health care, relationships and sports. A graduate of The University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism, she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in magazines and is an award-winning newspaper columnist.