Chair’s Cut: Invest in Yourself

After a couple of years of being busy beyond belief, does it feel as though things are slowing down somewhat for your business? If so, you are not the only one. More than 30 percent of respondents to the National Wood Flooring Association (NWFA) and Hardwood Floors magazine’s 2024 Industry Outlook survey said they expect sales in 2024 to be the same as in 2023. In response to a possible recession, NWFA members also said they are seeing customers focus more on price, delaying projects, or are experiencing less demand across the board.

The Leading Indicator of Remodeling Activity, released by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University, recently indicated that homeowner spending on improvements and repairs is expected to decline at an accelerating rate through the first half of 2024. I guess we all knew that the increased demand for remodeling projects could not be sustained at that pace forever.

What can you do when things slow down a bit? Understand that it won’t last forever and take this time to invest in yourself.

If you aren’t sure where to start, the NWFA offers education for everyone, no matter where you are in your career. NWFA University, the NWFA’s online learning platform, houses more than 350 courses that are accessible anytime, anywhere, from any device. It’s a convenient educational resource for professionals who are on the go and want to learn at their own pace.

Connect with other professionals while enhancing your skills at an NWFA hands-on training course. Each year, more than 50 events take place across North America, offering the opportunity to learn from highly skilled NWFA Regional Instructors.

From Basic Installation to Advanced, there is a class for you. Not only will you leave one of these events knowing more about the latest trends, techniques, and tools, but you will also build a network of people to call for advice when a problem plagues you on the jobsite or when you just want to talk shop.

Validate your industry knowledge and expertise by becoming an NWFA Certified Professional. Available certifications include Certified Sales Advisor (CSA), Certified Installer (CI), Certified Sand & Finisher (CSF), Certified Craftsman (CC), Certified Master Craftsman (CMC), and Certified Wood Flooring Inspector (CWFI). This is achieved through completion of specific online and hands-on testing. It is the ultimate way to enhance your professional credibility, offer customers peace of mind, be recognized as an expert in your field, and even generate new business by appearing in the NWFA’s “Find a Professional” search feature for consumers.

Take the time to read more about what your peers are predicting for the wood flooring market in the year ahead here. The industry outlook survey results are an important tool in helping us all plan and see where we stand in line with what others are experiencing. Then, contact the NWFA team at 800.422.4556 or visit to learn more about how you can position your business to take full advantage of opportunities when things pick back up.

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