Furniture Everyday

Bill McLoughlin

Now is the time for leadership

September 21, 2017

In times of uncertainty or challenge, the difference between success and failure can be slight and often comes down to a single intangible quality — leadership.

Defined, somewhat inadequately, as “the capacity to lead,” true leadership is easily distinguished by its absence and immediately recognized by its effective application. Within most any gathering, it will quickly become apparent where leadership resides, although many institutions and even industries struggle with creating a culture capable of nurturing and developing it.

There are traits, however, that all leaders seem to possess. Where some see obstacles, leaders see opportunity. While some rest on their success, leaders always seek improvement. Where some are expert in finding fault in others, leaders identify the best in those around them and work to nurture it.

Peter Drucker summed it up well:
“Management is doing things right.
Leadership is doing the right things.”

At a time when the furniture industry faces unprecedented change, there has never been a more critical time for individuals and organizations to assess and strengthen their relationship to leadership. Unlike “management,” which often resides in a job title or organizational responsibility, leadership knows no rank. It can be found at any level of an organization and quickly recognized by the positive results that flow from those who demonstrate it.

The upcoming Furniture Today Leadership Conference, Nov. 28-30 at the Four Seasons Resort in Orlando, Fla., will explore the dynamic nature of today’s furniture industry and what it will take for leaders to guide their companies successfully through its myriad changes. It will feature a higher level of direct retailer involvement than any previous FT conference. Because who knows the challenges today’s retailers face better than retailers themselves?

This year’s event will feature a unique panel discussion of retail CEOs moderated by Lee Goodman, most recently CEO of Jerome’s and former COO of Bob’s Discount Furniture. Our goal is to provide a discussion and level of industry insight that can only come from those who have shared time in the trenches and deeply, intrinsically understand the issues each must confront.

We will discuss the implications of e-commerce on customer acquisition — are you advertising on television to an audience that’s streaming online? — and explore the changing role of the store in an age of experiential merchandising.

Connie Post, one of today’s leading retail store designers will share insights on the changing face of store design and what it takes to create a destination retail experience.

If you relish a challenge, believe that the best time to undertake the first step to change is right now and, in short, if you’re a leader, we look forward to seeing you in Orlando.