A Message from the President – Manuel Yazijian, CMW21

February’s Horological Times

As I write this message, the AWCI Board of Directors met at AWCI Headquarters in Harrison, Ohio for our Strategic Action Plan. The Board and staff participated in an interactive session facilitated by Mr. T.D. Hughes, a well-respected business consultant. This meeting was held over four days, from January 31st through February 3rd. You may remember my October, 2012 message, where I stressed the need for proper business planning—I am keeping true to my promise.

Over the course of the last three months, we gathered feedback from the general membership and compiled this to help us with our planning. We also solicited input from the various members of industry, including, but not limited to suppliers, manufacturers, retailers, service centers and all those who are members of the Industry Advisory Board. Many of them attended to help us plan for the growth of our industry. We did our utmost to please everyone, while also knowing we could not be “all things to all people.“

As you may be aware, you were represented at this meeting by the various Board members who you helped elect. Based on their election platform, they were voted in and they were your eyes, ears, and most importantly, your voice at the meeting. Collectively, we also listened to your concerns and your suggestions and used these at this important meeting. However, keep sending in your suggestions and your concerns at any time—it will help us build a stronger you!

As a reminder to all, Board members pay their own way to travel to these meetings and have been doing so for a number of years now to help save on the Institute’s finances. They do this because they are dedicated individuals who care about you and want to give back to the profession. Many of them are just like you, making a living at the bench; therefore, they lose considerable income when they are away from their workplace. Please be sure to thank your representing Board members for taking the time to help make your life a little easier.
This Strategic Action meeting was an important one as we recognize our industry—as all industries—is continuing to change. During the meeting we reviewed the state of the repair industry, spare parts, finances, certification, timely communication, education reform, and staffing needs among others.

This will help us stay on track and plan our goals and implement them over the course of the next five years. By keeping up with the changes and trends, we stand less of a chance of becoming stale. Next month, I will give you more of an update on the results of our meeting.

Talking of stale, when was the last time you ordered fresh oil for your watches or clocks? If the oil bottle does not have a production or expiry date, it’s time to toss it. Some manufacturers recommend a fresh bottle every 2 to 4 years—and not 24 years!

I am always looking for dedicated individuals to serve on committees. If you would like to serve, please visit www.awci.com, proceed to the ABOUT US link and on the left hand column, choose COMMITTEE VOLUNTEER FORM. Fill out your information and click SUBMIT. Or, you can complete the form on page 29. If you have questions, you can contact me at the e-mail address below.

In the meantime, keep your skills honed, your standards very high, your attitude professional, your tools and equipment in great condition and your workshops clean and organized; you never know who may come by to pay you a visit.

Manuel Yazijian