Practice makes perfect

By |  September 2, 2014

I’m not exactly an all-star golfer.

Sometimes I’ll expect to hit a beautiful drive up the fairway but end up topping the ball about 10 ft. in front of me. I don’t expect that, but it happens far more often than I prefer.

Like my drives, I’ve learned in my short time with Pit & Quarry that the aggregates industry is sometimes completely unpredictable. I took this notion away from last week’s Pit & Quarry Roundtable & Conference in Cleveland, an event that gave industry leaders the opportunity to discuss issues and develop solutions. The roundtable, like a round of golf, is a practice in a sense: Participants leave with a better understanding of how to face industry issues when they return home.

The industry constantly deals with unanticipated troubles, even if the issues don’t directly stem from their companies. For example, MSHA’s mine inspections have been an ongoing issue for years. Another example: the Highway Trust Fund. With another short-term bill passed, aggregate producers and their vendors expect to lose business opportunities that would have been otherwise possible with long-term funding.

During this year’s roundtable discussion, someone asked participants to raise their hands if they expected their companies to have a more successful year in 2015. Some raised their hands, but the number of hands raised was far from the entire group.

So what about solutions? The roundtable gave industry leaders a chance to voice their opinions, offer advice and express concerns regarding a number of issues, including the highway bill, MSHA and the economy. Participants had the opportunity to discuss potential solutions to bigger problems. For example, should MSHA require its representatives to lead safety and educational programs?

This year’s roundtable participants were able to relate to each other and discuss how their companies are dealing with issues. And that’s what the roundtable is all about: Allowing industry leaders to leave with a network of colleagues and a sense of preparedness for handling issues that arise in the industry.

The roundtable, in a way, is like preparing for a big golf outing. The only way to get better is to practice, take advice and use what you learned. After all, practice makes perfect.

 

Photos: Allison Barwacz

Allison Barwacz

About the Author:

Allison Barwacz is the digital media manager for North Coast Media (NCM). She completed her undergraduate degree at Ohio University where she received a Bachelor of Science in magazine journalism from the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism. She works across a number of digital platforms, which include creating e-newsletters, writing articles and posting across social media sites. She also creates content for NCM's Portable Plants magazine, GPS World magazine and Geospatial Solutions. Her understanding of the ever-changing digital media world allows her to quickly grasp what a target audience desires and create content that is appealing and relevant for any client across any platform.

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