|Ralph Liebing, RA, CSI, CDT|
Post Number: 1093
|Posted on Wednesday, November 04, 2009 - 06:28 am: |
by Ralph Liebing, RA, CSI, CDT
I really am perplexed! We continue to struggle for legitimacy, but that struggle is a mostly quiet if not silent quest, with no fanfare and I am not sure just exactly what is [and isn't] going on! We moan, grumble, and whine-- basically to ourselves-- but seem to be ever so reluctant to expose ourselves and our work to anyone else in the world.
We are almost apologetic at times, and at other times very vocal and irritated, but those times are usually when we are collected among ourselves. The “choir”, such as we are, must at some point project its message beyond-- well beyond-- its own bailiwick and to the others who can, should and will benefit from our work.
At times we wage minor skirmishes and win some [the NAAB reversal for example] but somehow or other no big push really takes root! Others discount us; ignore us; find us irrelevant and worst of all attack our ethics and professionalism! They want to relegate us to “renegade” operatives and not the truly contributory professionals we are. It is ridiculous to read and hear the comments so deeply seated in pure ignorance and lack of understanding; and add to those comments the false proclamations about what our credentials and relationships should be. Without much in the way of reprisal, we are getting pushed around!
Interested in getting this stopped?
If so, then open the door, lift the blinds, pull back the drapes, separate the veil, and walk outside to see, meet, greet, and speak to others-- dispel the ill-grounded mirage of our profession! Project a professionalism that kills the ignorance, the obtuse, and the relegation-- that puts to fleeing the entrenched stereotype implanted in too many minds. But remember THEY will not move, get better, or change without our own directed, potent and visible efforts.
There needs to be a commitment-- a collective commitment!-- before this will mean anything. That must have the understanding, approval and support of our organizations, and their assistance in developing a meaningful program. OK! It means spending money, but the expenditure if creatively utilized, should be minimal. From such a start we can then expand into more sophisticated areas of PR, advertising, placement of technical and educational articles, and in general create an “appearance”-- a simple showing that the organizations and individual members carry insight and expertise that is being used now, but which can make a wider and deeper contribution to the construction industry as a whole.
We tend to be so reclusive that we simply do not appear to be at all! There must very large numbers of people who either don’t know us at all, or who thoroughly misunderstand what we do and contribute, and what our potential is! The latter group includes, I think it is fair today, some members themselves, unfortunately!
It is not a matter of proving our existence, but rather one of pure legitimacy that for far too long has just been allowed to languish, unattended, and apparently, we had no impetus to change. We are just like our products-- specifications; and, just as they are, the invisible third contract document! Only problem is, what happens to the other two documents IF there are no specifications? We don’t need to threaten, we need to expose, reveal and project our profession, its members and the contribution made-- time and time again, with high expertise. The best of any product line still needs to be advertised to keep understanding and interest among others-- and our “market-share”.
National Specifiers’ Week! A good, but small first step-- eh, what?
[See discussion under Coffee Pot and Water Cooler above]