Calculating Your Return on Investment
By Mike Sutter
Well with the month of June beginning, I hope everyone is enjoying the warm weather and good production weather for all your crews. For us in Phoenix, we are not so eagerly looking ahead to what is coming the next few months. We will be anticipating 115 degrees plus in July and August, and production dropping off significantly. While we don’t have any humidity to speak of, it will be like sticking your head in an oven and then being asked to make production levels on your jobs. I guess it is a lot like those of you in the north asking your men to hit production levels in January and February. But no use in complaining, it’s just a fact of life and we will get through it.
I know I mentioned it in my last article, but I want to remind everyone to sign up for the Mid-year meeting in Steamboat Springs, Colorado. It begins on August 28th and will prove to be one of our most memorable Mid-years. Steamboat is a cowboy town that happens to be one of the premier skiing locations in North America. I don’t expect any snow while we are there but my father-in-law who spent nearly his entire life there has told me that he has seen it snow in every month of the year! What you will find is a small town huddled in the Rocky Mountains that welcomes visitors from across the world with open arms. I’m sure you remember John Denver’s song “Rocky Mountain High” but it could take on a new meaning now that Colorado enjoys recreational use of some herbs there. But we will be concentrating on high in altitude when we have our welcome reception on the top of the ski hill overlooking the beautiful valley that Steamboat lies in on Sunday evening. If you don’t want to make the drive from Denver, be sure to book your flight from Denver to Steamboat/Hayden airport very, very early as there are limited flights. I hope you all can make it as I promise you a memorable experience.
We have been very busy at MCAA. We just returned from Chicago from the BIM-M Symposium, where we learned that the group is on schedule and on budget to complete BIM-M in 2018. While there, we also met with Informa (the convention show people) and Spec Mix at our MCAA office in Algonquin to plan our activities there for January 2018. It may sound a little early but it isn’t at all. We actually begin planning as soon as the last show is over. There is a lot to do and prepare for, and we will be ready. You will hear about some changes in the coming months, but one pretty big change is where Masonry Madness will be held next year. The old location of the gold lot is going to be the new wing of the Convention Center that will stretch all the way to Las Vegas Blvd. Our new Gold Lot will be on the South Side of the South Hall and we expect this location to be even better than the old location.
We have also just finished our Legislative Fly-In to Washington DC. As usual we had a great time and stormed the Capital in force. There is no doubt that our Representatives know how they can help us create jobs and get the government out of our way. I can’t wait to see the results of our efforts. Steve Borg and Matt Keelen, from the Keelen group always do a great job getting us meetings with the people that can make a difference and follow up with us sharing the results. The private tour of the National Cathedral was unbelievable. Ask Susie Odom about being inside one of the giant bells when someone (Mark Kemp) decided to ring it!
Now on to the title of my article, I have been at too many Career Days to count and I don’t think I have ever said no when asked to do one. Well a few weeks ago I was asked to do a very unusual one. It was for four kindergarten classes, and of course I said yes! We had four classes with each having about 20 students in each class. After a very brief explanation of masonry and I was surprised with how many had a general idea what a bricklayer and a stonemason was. I passed around some material, because they all wanted to feel it, and then we got around to the real work/fun. We had blueprints rolled up and they broke up into groups of four to build a project. There had to be a foreman to read the blueprints and the rest of the group teamed up to build the project. We had real block and brick that were on pallets and shrink-wrapped. Yes, they were miniature block and brick and we didn’t use mortar, click here to view the website where they can be purchased. When we completed each class, the students definitely knew what masonry was and were very excited about the prospect of becoming masons. They each received a foam brick to take with them but I’m not sure the teachers appreciated it as they may have been thrown around the classroom at each other. I’ll bet the majority of the kids went home and told their parents that they wanted to be masons when they grow up. So while the Return on Investment is rather long (12 years) I’m glad I made the investment and I encourage everyone to do the same if the opportunity arises.
One more thing, to my best friend of 40 years, RIP Denny Saarela, a bricklayer, you are missed.
Chairman’s Message Archive
June 2017Calculating Your Return on Investment
May 2017Sweet Tea and Grits
April 2017Silica, Auctions and Policy
March 2017Things to Remember
February 2017Looking Forward
January 2017A Fresh Start
December 2016Making Our Industry Stronger
November 2016MCAA Midyear Meeting Does Not Disappoint
October 2016Have You Made Your Pledge to the Foundation?
September 2016MCAA to Publish Masonry Magazine
Who Moved My Cheese?
August 2016Get Ready for MCAA’s Midyear Meeting
July 2016Making a Difference
June 2016Southern Hospitality
May 2016The 2016 MCAA Legislative Conference
April 2016MCAA: Looking out for your interests
March 2016Let’s share our passion!
February 2016Thanks for letting me give back
January 2016A week of masonry you can’t miss
December 2015Giving back
November 2015A successful Midyear Meeting in the Florida Keys
October 2015Seeing the future before our eyes
September 2015Join us for the Midyear Meeting
August 2015The MCAA Midyear Meeting is approaching
July 2015Spread the Word: Masonry Doesn’t Burn
June 2015Busy on ‘The Hill’ for you
May 2015Progress in the making
April 2015A voice in Washington
March 2015Another successful Convention in Vegas
February 2015An exciting year ahead
January 2015MCAA Convention is approaching
December 2014Defining success
November 2014Coming together for our industry
October 2014Striving to reach perfection and continually improving
September 2014Hitting the road and making a difference
August 2014Staying busy for you
July 2014MCAA Midyear Meeting approaching
June 2014MCAA staying busy and making progress
May 2014Be a voice in your industry
April 2014The MCAA is on the move
March 2014It’s all about helping each other
February 2014Ready for action
December 2013Happy holidays
November 2013MCAA Midyear update
October 2013Ushering in a busy fall season
September 2013Workforce a familiar friend
August 2013The MCAA in D.C.
July 2013A lot happening
May 2013Why not be a member?
April 2013First South of 40 Conference
March 2013Positive movement
February 2013Headed to Vegas
January 2013New beginning
December 2012It’s finally over
November 2012My trip to the Rockies
October 2012The 2012 election
September 2012Stay involved
July 2012Summer time
June 2012Exciting time
May 2012Working for you
April 2012Join us in D.C. next month
March 2012New beginnings
January 2012One more to go!
December 2011The life of a mason contractor
November 2011Join us in Vegas
September 2011This ole cowboy is excited!
August 2011As the world turns
July 2011Update From the President
June 2011The Strong Spirit of our Industry
May 2011A Bright Future
April 2011Springtime Updates from MCAA
March 2011Tidbits From MCAA
February 2011Time Flies By
January 2011The MCAA Convention: A Priceless Experience
December 2010The End of the Year
October 2010South of 40
September 2010Get Involved on All Levels
August 2010What Are We Doing?
July 2010Have a Great Summer
May 2010MCAA Key Accomplishments 2009-2010
The Government is Working, 24-7
April 2010MCAA is Working for the Mason Contractor
March 2010Moving Forward
February 2010A Fond Farewell
January 2010A New Year
December 2009Start the Year Strong
November 2009The Greening of our Industry
October 2009A Successful Midyear Meeting
September 2009MCAA in D.C.
August 2009Brick Voids
July 2009Vision 20/20 Moving Forward
June 2009Success On The Hill
May 2009Show Your Support Through Membership
March 2009On a Positive Note...
February 2009Vision 2020
State of the Association
January 2009The Silver Lining
December 2008How Is Your Business Doing?
November 2008Fastest Trowel on the Block
October 2008Thoughts on the 2008 Election
September 2008Industry Cooperation for Positive Change
August 2008Networking: Not Just a Buzz Word
July 2008MCAA: A Critical Investment in Your Future
June 2008Impact on the Hill
May 2008An Industry Response to a Customer Request
April 2008Join Us Next Month in D.C.
March 2008Were you at the World of Masonry in January?
February 2008New Horizons
January 2008State of the Association
Thanks for an Enjoyable Term as President
December 2007Wrapping up Another Year
November 2007Greetings From Italy!
October 2007MCAA, World of Masonry Join Forces
September 2007MCAA Looking to Expand Masonry Markets
August 2007Certification: Good Efforts and Bad Rumors
July 2007Positive Changes on the Horizon
June 2007MCAA Appoints New Executive Director
Mason Contractors Step up to Promote Total Masonry Construction
May 2007Certification is Not a Financial Windfall to the MCAA
April 2007Isn’t It Time You Joined With Us?
February 2007Advancing Masonry in a Global Economy
Certification Can Strengthen Our Markets
January 2007A New Battle Rages in Washington
December 2006National Initiatives Will Build a Stronger Industry
November 2006Masonry Showcase 2007: Networking to Build a Better Industry
October 2006Totally Engaged in Washington
September 2006MCAA's Skills Competitions Create Enthusiasm for Training
August 2006Heeding Huckabee's Call for Action
July 2006MCAA Membership Can Pay Real Dividends
June 2006Inaugural Masonry Industry Legislative Conference Presented a United Masonry Industry
May 2006This Years Convention Exhibited A New Excitement
April 2006I Can't Wait To Get Started!
March 2006Coming Together to Advance the Industry
Serving the Industry Has Been a Rewarding Experience
February 2006Coming Together to Expand Our Opportunities
January 2006Strategic Planning Creates Successful Future
November 2005It's Time You Joined the MCAA
October 2005You Have A Choice of Trades Shows Next Year in Las Vegas, But Only One Supports The Industry and Your Future
September 2005Volunteerism Advances America and Our Industry
August 2005Legislative Conference Puts Face of Industry in Front of Elected Officials
July 2005MCAA National Insurance Program Has Something to Offer Everyone
June 20052005 Masonry Showcase in Chicago Promotes Our Finest
April 2005Advancing the Masonry Industry
"Village" Competition Will Spotlight Our Industry at Construct America
March 2005Strong Reasons to Go to Masonry Showcase
February 2005Contractors Taking the Promotion Initiative
January 2005We Need Your Help!
December 2004Elections 2004: An Interesting Political Year
November 2004The Internet is Opening New Doors for Contractors
October 2004Mason Contractors + Specifiers = Construct America
September 2004Your Influence Can Impact the Election
August 2004Mason Contractors Lead Effort to Develop Volunteer Silica Work Practice
July 2004MCAA is More Active Than Ever on Your Behalf
June 2004Stepping Up to Sell Masonry Systems
April 2004New Challenges Await Us!
The State of the Association
March 2004Seeking Expanded Opportunities for Mason Contractors
February 2004The MCAA: Getting Plugged into Washington
January 2004Contractors Organize to Tackle Promotion
December 2003If You're Not Part of the Team, Now's the Time to Get off the Bench
November 2003The Strength of Unity
September 2003Association Health Plans - Making Insurance Accessible and Affordable
Military Construction: Traditional Masonry or Modern Design