An Opportunity for Industry Education

The showroom is the heart of our business.  We are always busy meeting clients, creating designs, and visiting kitchen remodel and bath renovation projects in progress at customers’ homes.  These activities are key to meeting our customers’ needs for their projects, but sometimes it makes sense to step away from the day-to-day life of the business to take time out for education and training.  The team at Woodmaster Kitchens make it a priority to participate in industry education so we can offer the best service and design advice to our clients.

The SEN Design Group’s semi-annual conferences are always at the top of our list of industry education opportunities.  The SEN Design Group is the nation’s first and largest kitchen and bath buying group.  Group membership offers a variety of educational, coaching, and training programs to members.  The semi-annual conferences are a highlight of SEN’s education programs, offering business insights to promote best practices among members, as well as face-to-face access to preferred vendor partners at tabletop sessions.   We also learn about the latest kitchen and bath design trends and meet with our industry colleagues to share experiences.  Education takes place both in and outside of the classroom, with more formal sessions taking the form of workshops, panels, and roundtables.

Here are the top 7 things we learned at this year’s SEN Design Group Conference:

1.       Cabinets were a hot topic, with Brian Mayer of Bellmont Cabinet Co. educating us on their latest designs, including the new Vero handleless kitchen cabinet line.

2.       Galley, Galley, and more Galley!  We can’t get enough of the Galley Workstation and its many benefits for kitchen design, so we were excited to see the Galley presentation at the SEN Fall 2017 conference.  This included information on their latest development:  the new Galley tap.

3.       Fantech told us about the importance of makeup air systems in houses.

4.       Every wine lover should have a place to store their favorite bottles.  Kessick Wine Cellars, SEN’s newest vendor partner, displayed sleek wine racks that will keep your wine supply organized. 

5.       Barn doors are an eye-catching feature used in spaces throughout the home, and Richelieu Hardware showed us unique options for barn door hardware in their vendor display at the SEN Fall 2017 Conference.

6.       Tile was a hot topic at the conference, and there were two unique tile displays that really caught our eye.  Emser Tile showed off their latest tile styles in neutral tones with geometric patterns (below left), while Daltile offered a tile selection with a rich color and texture that will add depth to any design (below right).

7.       An informative week of sessions and vendor displays concluded with an excellent talk by Robb Best, sponsored by Medallion Cabinetry, Design Craft Cabinets, and Yorktowne Cabinetry.  Robb gave us insights into best business practices, including the concept of always putting client needs first.

Conferences offer a rare opportunity for us to step away from the day to day business and gain knowledge and perspective that we can apply to our business operations and our designs throughout the coming year.  The conference afforded us valuable time to share insights with our industry colleagues from across the country, and to learn about the latest products and business practices.  We will be drawing on this inspiration over the coming year to bring the best kitchen designs and bath designs to our clients.  Stop by our showroom to find out more!