Tint Talk by Kat Coig
by Kat Coig
October 18th, 2016

Until Next Time

San Antonio was a great city to host this year’s WFCT—the weather was clear, the Riverwalk was easily accessible; it was a wonderful place to get back in touch with people we don’t get to see but once a year at the conference and Tint-Off™, or even meet new faces—as in my case.

Now, it may have only been my first time at WFCT, but the camaraderie among competitors, exhibitors and attendees alike, was tangible. I couldn’t get over how willing people were to help me with my understanding of the industry or offer their emails if I should have ever questions.

Sitting in the seminars, I learned first-hand about all aspects of the industry: the tools that can make film installations go smoother; how to make it in the decorative film market; the industry’s associations, the IWFA and the PWFDA, etc. Coming into this, I thought I’d be the only one looking for new information, but attendees of the seminars were so engaged with the speakers and asking questions, and the speakers were more than happy to share the knowledge they had on their respective specialties. It wasn’t what I was expecting to see and hear in such a competitive market. Seeing this coming together of the industry was an experience I think you can only have at WFCT. As one attendee told me after a seminar, “The education you take away from these is incredible. It’s one of the main reasons I come. This is our industry, and we need to learn from each other.”

But I have to say, one of my favorite parts of the week was watching the Tint-Offs™. Despite the title that was on line, each competitor seemed encouraging of one another. Even after the winners were announced, there were no hard-feelings, just excitement for next year’s competition. It’s rare to come across genuine skill and companionship when watching any kind of competition.

As obvious as it may seem, what makes an event great are the people that attend. The consensus at this year’s WFCT, according to exhibitors I spoke with, was how great it was to be able to go downstairs from their hotel room and instantly see friends (new and old) in the lobby—getting drinks at the bar, grabbing a bite to eat or just catching up. Not to mention, a step outside the hotel was the Riverwalk, where the breeze was just too nice to pass up on most nights. It truly was a coming together.

And I’d have to say that I agree. It was my first time attending any trade show, and it was essentially my introduction into a new role and into the industry. The closeness that everyone seemed to feel, I can second. No matter where I went, I was introduced to several people in the industry, or I’d see a few I had previously met in the week, all just as welcoming and excited for me and my new position as the next. It helped me with getting to know everyone, and not just the companies you work for, and I’m even more excited to continue working with you all.

So, thank you, San Antonio and the window-film industry for the welcome. I’m looking forward to seeing you all again at next year’s event.

This blog is from Focus on Film, the weekly e-newsletter that covers the latest news regarding window film and related products, including paint protection film. Click HERE to sign up—there is no charge. Interested in a deeper dive? Free subscriptions to Window Film magazine in print or digital format are available. Subscribe at no charge HERE.

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