August 28, 2011
Some would say that this post is really just filler, to get through the end of the summer. You might be right! After the 2011 Fall Boards in Milwaukee, Wisconsin I will be starting an HBA leadership series based on the NAHB Associates presentation that will be online after Fall Boards within nahb.org (shameless plug? Check).
I don't think random thoughts are just for filler, I believe inside voices should be heard out loud every once in awhile so people have an idea of what is going on inside (scary, I know).
I was just thinking this morning about the fact that no matter how hard we try, we are never going to beat Mother Nature (as I write this there is a hurricane bearing down on the New Jersey coast). We can only prepare for her wrath and deal with her anger after she has left the room. No marriage jokes here, those particular inside voices need to stay inside. It's tough to be at the mercy of something that you have little to no control over. Then there are events that can be controlled or at the very least a chance to alter. Legislation comes to mind as an event that can be controlled or altered.
So my thoughts grew and I became focused on the difference between a hurricane and legislation. Both change the way you feel, both change the way you act. One is an Act of God, the other is an act of apathy. We can not change an Act of God, we can adapt and learn a lesson. We can change, however, an act of apathy and all that is needed is an act of YOU. I kept thinking about why the majority of members allow apathy, as it pertains to taking control of their business lives, to settle in an have what's being thrown at the building industry be accepted as an Act of God. I can't speak for others so I'll just wonder out loud.
Another random thought I had yesterday, as I removed any object that can become airborne from my deck and yard, was the myths of the home builders association. I thought about associates becoming upset about lack of business from builders and wondered what they were personally doing to help and not complain. I gave thought to the HBA-old statement "Builders should do business with me, I'm a member!" When I think of that statement my thoughts wander to a fear that associates feel entitled to the business because they joined. I wonder what goes through those members minds. Nobody is entitled to anything. All you have is the right to help yourself and helps starts with understanding, understanding develops into action, action brings satisfaction. Be careful; too much satisfaction brings complacency. Complacency brings you back to the entitlement statement. Don't feel entitled, never be satisfied (business satisfaction is what I'm referring to). You are not going to receive business from the HBA, you will be given the right to the opportunity for business. I wonder why the phrase "nothing in life is given to you" is easily forgotten when it's convenient to the situation.
Really random thought that just entered my mind; The old "Christmas" classic (my thoughts do not have to be politically correct) "It's a Wonderful Life" was about a man named George Bailey, from the fictional town of Bedford Falls, who was shown what life would be like without him in it. One scene connects with me because of the building industry. That scene had George's dad talking about what they do professionally (Bailey Building and Loan) for the people of Bedford Falls. Peter Bailey commented "You know, George, I feel that in a small way we are doing something important. Satisfying a fundamental urge. It's deep in the race for a man to want his own roof and walls and fireplace." This is what we do; we help satisfy humankind's need for shelter. We are all in the most noble of professions. What would our professions be like without NAHB or the state and local HBAs? Not looking for an answer, just trying to make sense of the thought.
I have a lot more random thoughts but I'll share those with you another time when I'm looking for filler ;)
Submitted by: Michael Kurpiel, CGA, CGP
2011 NAHB Associate Members Committee Chair