Washington, D.C.—With negotiations around the debt ceiling encapsulating this city, board members of the World Floor Covering Association (WFCA) went to Washington to meet lawmakers regarding issues important to their own businesses—including independent contractor issues, the Marketplace Fairness Act and the Working Families Flexibility Act.
The meeting on Capitol Hill took place the day before WFCA’s annual board meeting and provided retailers and suppliers with a glimpse of Congress at work. “We had great audiences—they listened to us,” said Scott Humphrey, CEO of the WFCA. “They see [flooring retailers] as Main Street. You are individual votes to them.”
WFCA counsel, Jeff King, who has spent years lobbying on behalf of the flooring industry, called the meetings “highly successful,” adding, “We’re getting on [lawmakers’] radar. This is just the start of it.”
Joining WFCA members on the visit was Rhett Johnson, government relations manager for Jones Walker LLP, the influential law firm that lobbies for WFCA on important matters.
The growth in advocacy is among several initiatives WFCA has spearheaded in the last decade—since Humphrey took over as CEO. In that span, WFCA has been an agent of change for the flooring industry— taking over and funding the Certified Flooring Installers (CFI); founding the Floor Covering Education Foundation (FCEF); bolstered the Floor Covering Industry Foundation (FCIF); purchasing fcB2B; creating awards programs to honor flooring dealers (Luminary, Tom Jennings Champion Award); providing guidance on PPP loan forgiveness during the COVID-19 crisis; and many other endeavors.
But as Humphrey pointed out to members: “If all you are known for is what you used to be … you have a problem.”
Therefore, with a focus on the future, WFCA’s mission continues. For example, it is offering a leadership program starting this summer billed the S.E.A.L. (Seeking Excellence As Leaders) Certification, which is designed for all levels of retail management. Randy Gravitt, speaker, teacher and leadership coach, will oversee the program—which offers 72 course modules and culminates with a boot camp—where successful leaders can earn a master certification degree.
“This is for all people you want to lead,” Humphrey explained. “It’s an investment in your organization as we’re hoping to grow industry leaders. This is what I would like my legacy to be about.”
WFCA will cover the cost of S.E.A.L.
(For the full story, see the May 29 issue of FCNews.)