Month: June 2011

A few tons of toxic material never hurt anyone….right?

So I went to the City of Albuquerque’s Hazardous Waste Recycling site a few weeks ago to turn in some burned out florescent light bulbs. I had about 10 of them. I felt like I was doing the right thing since there is a small amount (approx 20 mg) of Mercury in the bulbs. Little did I know that I would get ridiculed for trying to keep a toxin out of the environment. It wasn’t a big deal to me at the time but it was quite annoying to hear the worker behind the fence at the recycling center see the bulbs and say “oh boy, florescent bulbs are really hazardous” in a sarcastic tone. Well, maybe 10 bulbs are not hazardous, but what about the hundreds of millions of bulbs that burn out every year? Is that enough for the worker to become concerned? Is 1 gram enough to be concerned with? Is 1 pound? How about the 2 to 4 tons of Mercury per year which is what the EPA estimates? Should we just put on our blinders and pretend the earth is so large that a little bit of toxic waste never hurt anybody?

Unfortunately, I have to always ask myself when are we, as a human race, going to figure out that we are not above the environment- we are a part of it. We live, breath and depend on the environment. Anything we introduce into the environment is not going to magically disappear.

So, the next time I go to recycle the florescent light bulbs, I will be sure to tape a note to the bulbs for the sarcastic worker explaining that by doing his job he is ensuring a better future for all. I encourage everyone else to do the same!

Change.

For many it is a frightening word. I am convinced that some people would rather go to the dentist or speak in public before embracing change. For me, change is about the only constant in life. It is a fusion of hope and uncertainty that needs to be accepted and embraced. Business is not immune to change either so that is why we at Dapwood are in the middle of three major changes…

1. New name
2. New location
3. New products

First of all, the company name. We were looking for a way to convey our young energy. To us, “dapper” conjured up images of smart and agile men and women constantly in motion. And then on the other side, we obviously work with hardwoods so the merging of “dapper” and “hardwood” spoke to us. Simple. Straight-forward. Appropriate.

Next was the location of the company. The old space we were in was ok…just ok. The area was not the greatest, it was a long commute for most employees, it was tight, and we were just tenants. So, after looking at over 50 building (I lost exact count at 30) for over a year, we found the right fit. It needs some TLC but it is ours to change. The anxiety comes with knowing that we have to move lots of lumber, equipment and some heavy machinery….all the while making sure we don’t miss any shipping deadlines.

Lastly, we looked at our current product line and felt it needed to be updated but lots of people still liked the designs. So we made the decision to keep some of the original designs but focus our efforts of change on a new seriesĀ of products.

Were these the right changes? We sure believe they were but with all changes there is always a shadow of uncertainty. Ultimately, we hope these changes resonate positively with our customers but equally important is that the changes feel good to us. So far so good. If not, we have a powerful word to work on more.