Northbrook, IL, March 26, 2014: Each year, the Round Table of Launderers and Dry Cleaners convenes to address mutual concerns and openly exchange ideas. 15 members of the prestigious trade organization recently held its 75th Annual Meeting in Nassau, the Bahamas. The Round Table is an informal group of top executives from laundry, linen, industrial and dry cleaning companies, each of whom was invited to join the organization because their company demonstrated best practices in the industry.
This year's gathering featured a week of meetings covering a variety of topics that are key to running a successful business in today's economic environment. Each day featured a different topic, with the discussion led by a different industry leaders. Topics covered included "How's Business," focusing on the financial health of the industry; Marketing and Advertising; Pricing Strategies; and, working with a Board of Directors. The conference also included a presentation Classic Cleaners of Indianapolis, in keeping with the Round Table's tradition of hearing from an invited guest (and potential new member) each year.
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"This year's Round Table focused on five strategic areas of our operations," according to Tom Zengeler, President of Zengeler Cleaners. "This exchange of strategic ideas will help each of us improve several areas of our businesses, from meeting the evolving needs of today's customer, compliance with industry regulations and implementing technological advances into our business."
The Round was founded in 1940 when Herb Koch, Lee Workman and Barrett Finn, industry leaders of that era, called for a "Sales Managers Pow-Wow," which was held in Allentown, PA. The meeting moved to NYC for the next 5 years, and became known as the Laundry Management Group. In 1950, the name was officially changed to the Round Table Conference and has remained that way ever since. Today, many "2nd-generation members" are part of the group. The Round Table has never had a paid facilitator; rather, the responsibility is passed from member to member.
Because an open exchange of ideas is the life-blood of the group, each participant's "price of admission" is to play an active part in the presentation of at least one topic at the conference. And since no two operations at the RoundTable conference are competitors, it has become an accepted practice to exchange this kind of highly confidential information. Participants agree that confidences remain inviolate, creating an atmosphere that allows for an open exchange of priceless ideas for forward-thinking operators. Attendees are also encouraged to visit each other's operations to further the learning process, another key benefit of membership.