New York Times Columnist, Tom Friedman, wrote a thoughtful column about the hard truths leaders around the world seem unwilling and unable to tell their own citizens.
Citing problems including the “global credit crisis, the jobs shortage and the need to rebuild Arab countries from the ground up,” Friedman writes that their solutions require “extraordinary leadership that has to start with telling people the truth.”
Unfortunately, Friedman concludes, “that is not what we’re seeing from leaders in America, the Arab world or Europe today.” A shame, says Friedman, because telling the truth is not only the right thing to do but it also binds people to you and results in their own positive action.
Smart, seasoned gents, like successful manufactured home community owner, attorney, finance expert and consultant Marty Lavin have been telling us for years: 'MH, we are dying. Wake up, smell the coffee and take the cure.'
Marty Lavin has communicated in part:
some will make money,
we may see FEMA,
oilfield boom related or other upticks,
but as an industry we are dying. Marty has written for us at MHProNews.com, not because he was looking for a new client, but rather because he cares enough about the industry to tell the truth as he sees it. That's a giving-back form of leadership.
Last year, IBISWorld named MH retailers as among the top ten dying Industries in America, along with:
> DVD, Game & Video Rental
> print publishers
> photo finishers and others.
Maybe someone with an MH factory may think, it is a shame, but that's ok, I'll sell to communities or developers. Maybe someone else reading this owns a community and thinks, that's okay, I still have 70%-80% physical occupancy…
…but the point is that if we fail to think of appendages of our industry as important or of value, we could in fact lose even more of the Industry in the process.
Ladies and gents, whatever you do in MH – even if you are profitable – there are warning bells that call for rapid change. It's great that we've seen a 9 month rise in shipments, but to make that rise long term, business people like yourself will have to take concrete steps, or risk their future in our industry.
Until you fix – at least in your firm in your market(s) – what 's wrong in manufactured housing, sooner or later, you and your business will go the way of the buggy whip. Who says? Smart guys like Lavin and others.
Not because we don't have the best housing value in America, but in spite of that fact.
Until we get to the root cause of our issues, we may see bright spots here and there, but overall, individual businesses will be faced with decline.
There are reason why Tony and his team of expert writers and sponsors have built the largest audience of its kind in the industry. A key part is telling the truth. A willingness to put the facts or opinions out there, and openly take public or private comments from readers.
When a mistake is pointed out on MHProNews.com, guess what Tony does? He corrects it, thanks the person for pointing it out. With thousands of pairs of eyes on his pages daily, that’s a rare form of transparency and accountability. ##
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