(Editor’s note: Coinciding with Women’s History Month, FCNews has launched a new guest column series in support of the “Women of the Flooring Business” social media group, founded last year by Michelle Winters, Lisbeth Calandrino and Rachel Berlin. This new series was designed to give members of the group—which is roughly 1,000 members strong and growing—a platform to share their experiences, observations and best practices.)
Social media can be a blessing or a curse—you just have to navigate it the right way.
For years, I have participated online, sharing cute kid pics and relevant milestones while keeping in touch with long-lost friends and family across the country, and that includes past coworkers who feel like family.
Shannon Vogel [director of social media at Creating Your Space, a Broadlume company] is one of those girlfriends. I met her through work in the flooring business, but she will always be a lifelong friend. She invited me to this great platform/Facebook group called “Women of the Flooring Business.”
It’s refreshing to read, see and share experiences—from a female’s perspective—this wonderful business of ours. In the Facebook group page, we get to laugh and vent—know we’re not going crazy—get advice and flourish.
What I find the most helpful and beneficial is when ladies ask and share things specifically about marketing, design and social media platforms. Discussing different approaches and what has been successful (as well as what hasn’t been successful) helps to pave the way for others.
That banter and feedback, I’ve found, is super useful. No one has to feel they are on an island alone; we have community. I find myself and especially my female customers interacting more online with each other vs. reaching out through traditional email channels.
As the director of design for the East Coast for Shaw Floors, single and multi-family, I call on (and work closely with) architects, project managers, design consultants and interior designers who are primarily female. These ladies are strong, intelligent, uber-creative, knowledgeable and inspiring. I share with them design trends, product knowledge, tips and talking points, merchandising ideas, etc. In turn, I also pick up design trends, tips and talking points as well as perspectives from millennials so I can learn the latest design lingo and hip style tricks. We are like boomerangs, bouncing information off each other. From training on new initiatives like “Made Smarter Live Better,” to sharing new technology like Shaw’s Floorvana Plus visualizer, these designing women are learning, adapting, juggling this busy world of working from home, meeting with customers safely and navigating care for their own families—all while sharing best practices.
So, ladies, friends, coworkers—lend us your ears. Join our Facebook group for refreshing content, candor about this business and meet some new friends. You won’t be disappointed.
Tracy Daves is the director of design for Shaw Floors on the East Coast—a position she has held for 16 years. She specializes in training on flooring and designing from the ground up, and she has made appearances for Shaw Floors on HGTV’s Smart and Green Homes and others.