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Ray Allegrezza, Editor in Chief of Furniture Today welcomers you to Editor's Desk. Each week we will take a look at interesting news or events in the furniture industry. The most important part of this whole process will be your input. So, take a look at my posts below and weigh in with what you think by clicking on "Add Your Comment" at the bottom of each blog.
If you've been watching the news, you know that retail giants including Walmart, Kohl's and others are predicting holiday sales soft enough to make the case that limp may be the new firm.How soft? Hopefully not to the point that Black Friday is renamed Bleak Friday, but like it or not, fewer consumers are shopping the aisles of big-box discounters.In fact, Walmart recently linked its third consecu... Read MoreComments (3)
Sometimes you hear a story that simply leaves you scratching your head in disbelief. Last week, I heard one from a furniture designer named Austin Rese. Austin is a man on a mission to launch a new lifestyle line of home furnishings. But before you yawn and turn the page, let me add this twist: He intends to bring this line of home furnishings to market from materials sourced only from the United... Read MoreComments (32)
The recently completed High Point Market gave the industry a chance to preview thousands of new products, some of which may become bestsellers. But I am here to tell you that sometimes our industry's future best sellers are not made of wood, fabric, foam, metal or glass. Instead, the future best sellers I spotted during market were 10 intelligent and driven young men and women who have earned the... Read MoreComments (1)
Years ago, I shared a story with my then-young sons because there was a critical lesson attached - and I believe that important lessons are best taught early and often in life.I share that story with you here, because I also believe that important lessons are timeless.I began by telling my sons that there was a time in history when the Roman Empire ruled the world and that Rome was even referred t... Read MoreComments (4)
In light of its recent Chapter 11 filing, Furniture Brands has been in everyone's crosshairs.In particular, I've heard plenty of grumbling about the compensation levels of many of their executives, particularly in light of the corporation's steady financial decline over the years.And while it is incredibly hard to understand fat bonuses linked to failing financial performance, studies suggest that... Read MoreComments (7)
In business, if you aren't moving ahead you're at risk of falling behind. Thanks to this year's slate of Leadership Conference speakers, I'm feeling good about hitting that goal.Our theme this year, Mastering the Game, underscores the fact that as business gets more competitive the winners are going to be those players who truly are industry masters.Setting the stage will be a master communicator,... Read MoreComments (0)
They say good news travels fast. I say bad news travels even faster, especially when litigation is along for the ride.The bad news I am referring to is Prop 65, which began innocuously enough in California decades ago as the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986. In a nutshell, Prop 65 mandates that businesses must warn California consumers about the presence of certain chemicals i... Read MoreComments (1)
When the battle isn't your own, it is easy to assume the role of Armchair General. With that in mind, expect to see a flood of essays, blogs and ramblings from these sofa strategists anxious to tell us why Furniture Brands failed. (see earlier article about bankruptcy filing.)But since so much relating to the FBI outcome is still up in the air, I think I am going to leave my helmet off for now. Ho... Read MoreComments (10)
The other day, while flipping the through the TV channels, I stopped and watched a few minutes of a reality show called "Intervention."The show follows the lives of troubled souls suffering from everything from addictions to compulsive behaviors.It seems that, regardless of the disorder, the struggling characters know they have a serious issue or issues, but just can't seem to face it, u... Read MoreComments (4)
I want you to recall the biology class you probably took back in high school. Specifically, think back to the class where you had to dissect a frog. When I do, I also remember our teacher telling us the old boiling frog story.The story's point was that a frog placed in boiling water would immediately jump out. But placed in cold water that was slowly heated, the frog would not realize the imminent... Read MoreComments (2)
Whenever I attend a market, it's all about m.e. But before you think I am a study in narcissism, let me explain. In this instance, m.e is actually short for market epiphany, which is something I strive to take back from each show.As part of the F/T team that is responsible for churning out multiple videos and show dailies, I realized I was often so caught up in the daily frenzy that I was not taki... Read MoreComments (4)
For as long as I can remember the furniture industry has been referred to as the good old boys club.Depending on who was making that declaration, it either meant you were "in," as in part of an elite, members-only fraternity, or you were "out," as in out of touch with the current realities of the day.Having recently come back from the Las Vegas Market, my question, for those wh... Read MoreComments (9)