The arrival of summer's heat brings all of our business activity into high gear, as the months of learning, studying, planning and improvement evolve into pure execution for the busy months. Our industry continues to evolve and grow, and your association leads the way in so many crucial ways to ready our teams for this critical harvest period. 

Our recent Congressional Fly-In led by Jon Melchi was a good example of your association ensuring that our voices are heard loud and clear in this dynamic period of change and opportunity in Washington, D.C. While all the arrangements for the Fly-In took months for HARDI staff to prepare, it is the participation of our individual members that really counts. Thanks to those members who took the time to advocate for causes important to all our members.  During the Fly-In, we awarded the 2017 HARDI Small Business Champion Award to Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee and Reps. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington to recognize their efforts to support causes that affect HARDI member businesses. It was encouraging to see so many younger members at this year's Fly-In. 

We are right around the corner from our Emerging Leaders Conference in Louisville, with hotel cutoff coming June 29. Don’t hesitate. Sign up and you won’t regret it. Additionally, the annual Big Man on Planet (BMOP) competition launched again on May 1. You can get your team involved by contacting Thermostat Recycling Corp. at 

Now is also the perfect time to get your leadership team together to decide who should attend the Sales and Marketing Optimization Conference in Philadelphia this September. This combined conference offers your team the chance to learn vital skills to get the most sales impact out of your marketing investments. As marketing continues to migrate to a multitude of digital platforms, integration and coordination of sales efforts to capitalize on marketing spending become critical. Taking the time to refocus your team this fall could be a great way to reignite the growth rate of your business. 

And finally, the main event: The HARDI Annual Conference 2017 is open for registration and filling up fast.  Everything HARDI staff has learned about making your annual conference the highlight of your business development year will be bigger, better and more valuable this year.  Housed at Aria, the premier property in Las Vegas, our layout and resources will be better than ever. It's a sure bet that this year's conference will be one for the record books. I look forward to seeing you there. 

Best wishes for a terrific summer selling season,

Tom Roberts