by Lew Migliore
Over 26 years ago, Al Wahnon and I made a deal.
When he started Floor Covering News, I told him I wanted to write on carpet claims. He was fascinated and said, “Yeah? Will you have enough material to fill a column every issue?”
To which I replied, “Till the day I die.”
Then Al said, “Go for it, kid.”
Well, 630 columns and 26½ years later here we are. I’m not going to die, nor am I retiring. As John Force, drag racing funny car champion says, “We’re just getting started.” So, too, are we at LGM. But the time has come to bow out of writing “The Claims File” column.
My relationship with Floor Covering News has been wonderful. Al took me under his wing and gave me a platform that helped promote my business and career. That career has blossomed and, today, we are participating in some of the largest commercial claims, consulting with the largest corporations, developers, contractors, architects, designers, law firms and institutions in the nation. We consult with manufacturers and are involved in developing, marketing and promoting cutting- edge technology.
Of my partners and associates at LGM, I’m the only one who has maintained a relationship with the retail community. I will not relinquish that involvement and you can continue to call me for assistance. I don’t plan on getting out of the industry any time soon; I love what we do more than ever and the opportunities are endless.
I want to thank all the loyal readers and especially my “fans,” who supplied me material for every “Claims File.” All ideas were fresh as a result of just having gone through the experience with one of you. I never made notes, maybe a few on a Post-it. Typically, I would just sit at the computer, let my fingers fly over the keys and the column materialized.
When reminded I had a column due “today,” I would whip it out in as little as 25 minutes. And like you, I liked to read what I wrote when I got my issue, almost like I didn’t write it.
While I’ll no longer be doing “The Claims File,” I’ll continue to write the Commercial Flooring Report newsletter and, from time to time, may contribute a column to FCNews’ sister publication, Green Operations (GO).
You’ll still be able to reach me by email, phone or online and I’ll continue to be at your service.
The saying, “All good things must come to an end,” is appropriate here. “The Claims File” has been good for all involved and all who it has helped, influenced and affected. I can’t tell you how many dealers called over the years to comment, praise or say they have a column hanging in their store for reference.
That’s been payment enough and motivating to receive those accolades. One of the motivating factors in the style of writing, which was once analyzed as being at an eighth grade level, was at least 18 years ago when a secretary at a company we did business with said, “I love reading your column because you write so I can understand it.”
I never forgot that and always used it as a guide. I hope I’ve had the same affect on you: That I’ve been able to help, enlighten, educate and entertain.
I thank you, Floor Covering News, for giving me the opportunity.
What I leave you, the reader, is a vein of relevant information you can continue to tap into and use.
And remember, you can still come to me and I’ll continue to help you. That will never change. I plan to be around for a long time yet.