Friday, January 28, 2011

Engaging the Silent Majority – Members who Don’t Participate

By Jim Benney

One of the pivotal benefits the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) offers its members is a voice and a vote, and we strongly encourage our entire membership to exercise this benefit to its fullest.

Your voice provides this organization with the benefit of your opinion and expertise; and your vote helps to ensure our standing as a “consensus” organization; as well as assuring that programs and standards being developed continue to support the goals and mission of NFRC.

Unfortunately, not all of our members take advantage of the opportunity to participate in how our ratings are developed and the impact they can have on market transformation and energy efficiency.

Maybe some members don’t participate in our consensus-based process because they feel like they can’t truly make a difference. Ironically though, a lack of participation can bring unintended consequences that adversely affect our entire organization.
Looking at the big picture reveals why every opinion, every idea, and every vote matters to NFRC.

Lack of participation adversely impacts fellow members. Those who choose not to participate in the development of NFRC’s ratings deprive others of alternative ideas and unique insight that could have influenced voting.

Members who choose not to participate also adversely impact themselves. They miss valuable networking opportunities to influence industry leaders who shape the future of NFRC standards.
They miss opportunities to develop a reputation as an industry expert among their peers and forego the chance to solidify their credibility with potential customers.

Possibly worst of all, lack of participation limits everyone’s growth, including NFRC itself. We can only improve the positive impact our ratings have on the industry and the world through the practical application of the vast and exceptional knowledge our members possess.

NFRC members have access to the brightest minds in the fenestration industry, and we
encourage frequent interaction and relationship building to create new opportunities.

With so many positive benefits to gained, how can NFRC encourage more participation? How can NFRC facilitate more interaction among members, and what kind of rewards would motivate them to share their knowledge with professionals who rely on new ideas to succeed?