2019 May Hardwood Matters

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H A R D W O O D M AT T E R S May 2019

What Leadership Looks Like


T H E O F F I C I A L P U B L I C AT I O N O F T H E N AT I O N A L H A R D W O O D L U M B E R A S S O C I AT I O N S T R O N G R O O T S . G L O B A L R E A C H . | W W W. N H L A . C O M

CONTENTS May 2019 • Issue 200





15 What Leadership Looks Like

TOP POST OF THE MONTH at facebook.com/NHLAOfficial


Watch Class 188 graduate!


6 Accolades 6 Inside NHLA 8 Education Spotlight 12 Legislative Log Transportation on the Horizon 20 Rules Corner Inventory Management to


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President’s Message Educational Calendar Job Board


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H A R D W O O D M AT T E R S T H E VO I C E O F T H E H A R DWO O D I N D U ST RY National Hardwood Lumber Association PO Box 34518 • Memphis, TN 38184-0518 901-377-1818 • 901-382-6419 (fax) info@nhla.com • www.nhla.com

THE MISSION OF NH LA To serve NHLA Members engaged in the commerce of North American hardwood lumber by: maintaining order, structure and ethics in the changing global hardwood marketplace; providing unique member services; promoting North American hardwood lumber and advocating the interest of the hardwood community in public/private policy issues; and providing a platform for networking opportunities.


Ally Global Logistics LLC


Baillie Lumber Co.


DV Hardwoods


King City/Northway Forwarding


Matson Lumber Co.

IFC Pike Lumber Company, Inc. 5 RossiGroup 11

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U•C Coatings, LLC


Wood-Mizer, LLC

For advertising, convention sponsorships and exhibit booth sales contact: John Hester, Director of Membership at j.hester@nhla.com or 901-399-7558 Vicky Simms, Membership Development Manager at v.simms@nhla.com or 901-399-7557



Darwin Murray McClain Forest Products President

Bucky Pescaglia Missouri-Pacific Lumber Co., Inc. Unique Services

Jeff Wirkkala Hardwood Industries, Inc. Vice President

Kevin Gillette Tioga Hardwoods, Inc. Rules

Brent Stief Huron Forest Products, Inc. Past President 2016-2018

Darrell Keeling Northwest Hardwoods Structure


Mike Powers Maley & Wertz, Inc. Industry Advocacy & Promotion

Lorna D. Christie CEO l.christie@nhla.com Amanda Boutwell Marketing and Communications Manager a.boutwell@nhla.com

Jon Syre Cascade Hardwood, LLC Membership & Networking COMMITTEE CHAIRS

Renee Hornsby Director of Communications/Editor r.hornsby@nhla.com

Stephanie VanDystadt DV Hardwoods, Inc. Membership

Melissa Ellis Smith Graphic Designer m.ellis@nhla.com

Rob Cabral Upper Canada Forest Products, Ltd. Promotion & Advocacy

■■■ Trisha Clariana Office Manager Desirée Freeman Controller Julia Ganey Member Relations Manager

Garner Robinson Robinson Lumber Company Convention David Mayfield Mayfield Lumber Co. Inspection Services

Rich Hascher Inspector Training School Instructor

Bruce Horner Abenaki Timber Corp. ITS/Continuing Education

John Hester Director of Membership and Business Development

John Griffin Frank Paxton Lumber Communications & Marketing

Debbie Horn Executive Assistant/Project Management

Joe Snyder Fitzpatrick & Weller, Inc. Rules

Carol McElya Accounting Assistant & Publications Becky Miller Inspector Training School Administrator Vicky Quiñones Simms Membership Development Manager Dana Spessert Chief Inspector


Rachel Spiers Marketing Associate r.spiers@nhla.com M AY 2 0 1 9 H A R D W O O D M AT T E R S

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n 1946, NHLA opened the Inspector Training School to provide veterans returning from World War II an opportunity to find a rewarding career in the hardwood industry.

Since the first class in Memphis, thousands of students have followed the same path. For many of those students, graduating from the ITS was the beginning of a career that started on a pile of lumber or green chain, and often ended in a corner office, running their own company.

Last month, I had the honor of speaking to the 188th graduating class of the School, 36 years after I was sitting in the same room, waiting for my own future to begin. It was the first time I have addressed an ITS graduation, and it brought back memories of the first stage of my own journey in the hardwood lumber industry. Yes, class sizes have changed over the years, but the energy in the room was still the same. I attended the first class under Bob Sabistina who handed me my certificate. As I had just completed military training in the Missouri National Guard, I was honored to have served as class Sergeant of Arms. The entire NHLA team made sure the graduation was a big deal for our recent graduates. The graduates and their families enjoyed a fantastic breakfast with white tablecloths and flower settings. These future inspectors and their families received the attention and respect they deserved and I was proud to be representing the NHLA Board, staff, and all of our members. In addition to Dana Spessert who opened the ceremony, Rich Hascher offered his own perspective on “what’s next” for the students. No one can teach the rules like Rich – his dedication to his students is well known, as is his availability to work with each one until they have memorized every single word of every single rule and taught how to apply them.

learned from class to his family run sawmill. By the end of 12 weeks, his father stated Grant had learned grading techniques that would earn the family mill an additional $100,000 each year. A solid return on a $2,500 tuition fee! We also heard motivational remarks from Tennessee State Senator Dolores Gresham, who is the Chair of the Senate Education Committee. The Senator has become an important advocate for the school in a very short time. She has opened doors for the NHLA staff to interact with local vocational-education and promote the ITS to Tennessee students in search of a career. The ultimate goal is to increase enrollment of the school. Early results of our efforts have proven promising this far. At the end of the ceremony graduates were presented with class awards, certificates and alumni pins. It continues to be an inspirational moment. I would also like to recognize the Lumbermen’s Club of Memphis who rallied many decades ago to move NHLA from Chicago, IL to Memphis. They are the oldest club in Memphis and to our knowledge, they have had representation at every class graduation. Thank you!

Darwin Murray, NHLA President McClain Forest Products dmurray@mcclainforestproducts.com

Another highlight of the day for me was the presentation from the Class President Grant Dorris. I had the opportunity to speak with Grant’s parents who own a sawmill in Tennessee. Every weekend when Grant returned home from school, he applied what he had


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A new beginning for the Gold Standard for Cherry from Emporium, PA The Rossi Group announces the launch of its new State of the Art high-tech sawmill at Emporium in Pennsylvania to serve domestic and export markets from the sustainable Allegheny Forest resources with the highest quality Cherry and many other hardwood species.

Rossi Group LLC, www.rossilumber.com Tel: 1(860) 6323505



Milestone Members NHLA would like to recognize our members who celebrate a milestone anniversary of 5 years or more during the month of May.

5 YEARS Industrial Appraisal Company | Sustaining | May 2014 Laufer Group International | Sustaining | May 2014

20 YEARS Bauman Sawmill, Inc. | Active | May 1999 Meier Forest Products, Inc. | Active | May 1999


Hidden Sawmill | Active | May 2014

USA Woods International, Inc. | Active | May 1989


NHLA LAUNCHES NEW WEBSITE The new and completely redesigned website features a streamlined and simplified design, improved functionality and enriched content areas to keep members and visitors up-to-date on the latest news happening in the hardwood lumber industry. The new website serves as a platform for the three core strategies that form the pillars of NHLA’s 2020 future focus: • Provide Strength & Structure to the hard- wood industry’s expanding global community • Deliver innovative technology enabled value to members around the world • Promote and defend the hardwood industry The new NHLA website will be regularly updated with news about the hardwood lumber industry, member accomplishments, events and more. Visitors are encouraged to explore the new website and sign up for NHLA’s mailing list to stay abreast of the latest news and developments.


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NHLA Annual Convention Registration is


October 2-4, 2019 Visit our website at nhla.com and register today! W W W. N H L A .C O M

Contact us today for competitive rates and unparalleled service for 40+ years! http://kingcitynorthamerica.com/ USA 1-855-682-1637 WWW .NHLA .COM CDN 1-800-335-5394

Michael Hilburn - President mhilburn@kingcityusa.com

Lloyd Lovett - CEO

M AYl.lovett@kingcitynorthway.com 2 0 1 9 H A R D W O O D M AT T E R S |



NHLA CONTINUES TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE HARDWOOD INDUSTRY WORKFORCE The Graduation of the 188th Class of the NHLA Inspector Training School

State Senator Dolores Gresham

Darwin Murray and Rich Hascher

Darwin Murray and Grant Dorris

Chelsea Nurmi and Dana Spessert

Rich Hascher and Collin McMillan

Top Left photo: (Top Row, Left to Right): Jason Hawkins, Jon-Alex Bailey, Kyle Stepherson, David Jaszczur, Collin McMillan, Brian Lau, Carter Tacelosky, Tim Yantha, Mitchell Gruver (Bottom Row, Left to Right): Lee Pruitte, Grant Dorris, Chris Collins, Richard Hascher (Instructor), Chelsea Nurmi, Jacob Younts, Hank Petty


he National Hardwood Lumber Association celebrated the graduation of the 188th class of the Inspector Training School on Friday, March 29, 2019. Ten students completed the 12-week traditional program with an additional four students completing the Progressive Program for a total of fourteen graduates.

The Association was excited to welcome State Senator Dolores Gresham as the keynote speaker. Gresham, who serves the 26th District of Tennessee, addressed the graduates saying, “The lumber industry is very important to my Senate district and to the state of Tennessee. The inspectors are essential to this industry’s success. I congratulate them on a job well done.”


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As Chair of the Senate Education Committee, Senator Gresham is working to elevate vocational and technical education under Governor Bill Lee’s new legislative initiative, called GIVE (Governor’s Investment in Vocational Education). The initiative supports regional partnerships among schools, industry, and technical colleges to develop more work-based learning and apprenticeship opportunities. NHLA President Darwin Murray also addressed the graduating class. As President of McClain Forest Products and a graduate of the NHLA Inspector Training School, Murray reflected on his personal industry experiences. “Twenty-seven years ago, I was seated right where you are today, as a student in the 82nd Class. Whatever W W W. N H L A .C O M

steps I have taken throughout my career, NHLA was there, right beside me, providing me with the contacts and education I needed to keep moving forward,” explained Murray. “Today, I am President of McClain Forest Products, and President of the NHLA Board of Managers. My intention is not to brag, but simply demonstrate that your graduation from the NHLA Inspector Training School will take you anywhere you want to go. It was the foundation of my career.”


Class President, Grant Dorris spoke to his fellow students during the ceremony saying, “There is a national effort to encourage more high school graduates to consider a trade like lumber inspection as opposed to a four-year institution. I believe this would be a great move for our country because skilled labor is quickly disappearing and leaving a huge opportunity for people such as lumber inspectors to step up and fill the void.” He went on to say,” Like many of my classmates, I am a college graduate and I can promise you that I did not have to study or apply myself during my college days like I have these past 12 weeks. It was tough, but we stuck it out together and worked as a team. I think that will be the most important lesson of all.”

Mitchell Gruver, Allegheny Wood Products International, Inc.

Special Thanks!

Lee Pruitte Clark, Lumber Co., Inc.

Jon-Alex Bailey, Maple Rapids Lumber Mill, Inc. Christopher Collins, Maple Rapids Lumber Mill, Inc. Grant Dorris, Volner Sawmill, Inc.

David Jaszczur, Cherry Forest Products Brian Lau, Teamer Limited Collin McMillan, Woodlands Lumber Co. Chelsea Nurmi, Connor Sports Flooring Hank Petty, Tropical Hardwood Brokers, Inc.

Kyle Stepherson, Independent Carter Tacelosky, Independent Tim Yantha, McRae Lumber Company, Ltd. Jacob Younts, Y & Y Hardwoods, Inc.

ITS Graduation Breakfast sponsored by:

Outstanding individual awards recipients were as follows: Grant Dorris – ITS Educational Foundation Award for Highest Overall Average Jacob Younts – Howard Hanlon Award for Second Highest Overall Average Grant Dorris – Westside Hardwood Club Award for Highest Board Run Average Jon-Alex Bailey – J.P. Hamer Award for Most Improved Student Chelsea Nurmi – NHLA Award for Best Attitude/ Citizenship

Enrollment is now open for the 189 class, which begins at Northcentral Technical College in Antigo, Wisconsin on May 20th. To enroll or learn more about the program please visit www.nhla.com. th

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Kyle Stepherson – Lumbermen’s Club of Memphis Leadership Award Kyle Stepherson – Willard Scholarship Award Collin McMillian and Kyle Stepherson – ITSEF Scholarship Recipients M AY 2 0 1 9 H A R D W O O D M AT T E R S |


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Transportation on the Horizon by DANA COLE, Executive Director Hardwood Federation


oncerns about transportation—from crumbling infrastructure to outdated truck weight limits to a shortage of truck drivers—has become top of mind for virtually every sector in the U.S. economy including ours. Despite a consistent drum beat the last several years out of Washington about the desperate need for a comprehensive transportation infrastructure spending bill, none has materialized. Meanwhile, the 18.4 cents a gallon gas tax— which has not been increased since 1993 and is the main revenue stream for funding maintenance and repair of our nation’s roads and bridges—is increasingly insufficient to keep up with transportation investment needs. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which is typically opposed to tax increases, is on record supporting an increase in the gas tax and Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao indicated at a recent Congressional hearing that all funding options are on the table. One of these options is switching from the gas tax to a vehicle miles travelled (VMT) fee on motorists. Rep. Sam Graves (R-MO), ranking member on the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee, is a vocal proponent of VMT. As increasing numbers of motorists move from petroleum fueled to electric powered vehicles,


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the policy rationale behind the VMT is that it would capture revenue from these next generation vehicles. In short, there have been numerous hearings in various Congressional committees over the last several months on infrastructure needs and policy proposals. The scenario that appears to be most likely to unfold is that infrastructure spending will continue to figure prominently in Congressional debate this year, but that actual action on all transportation related issues will be folded up into the comprehensive highway bill that is scheduled to be reauthorized in 2020. Along the way, there will be focus on a few legislative proposals that are of interest to the hardwood forest products sector. Those proposals are outlined below.


One of the issues that has been a challenge to the logging sector is the fact that gross vehicle weight limits on state roads are often higher than the 80,000 pound weight limit on the federal interstate highway system. States typically impose an 80,000 pound limit on W W W. N H L A .C O M

The bill would allow trucks carrying raw logs, chips and biomass at the maximum gross vehicle weight limit on state roads to travel on the interstate at that same weight within that state’s borders. their own roads, but in practice the limit is closer to 90,000 pounds because they allow for a “tolerance” of 5-10 percent for agricultural commodities including raw logs, chips and biomass. The result is that fully loaded log trucks are forced to stay on smaller state roads and travel through small towns even when a more direct, safer route to the mill is on the interstate. Legislation is about to be introduced this Congress called the Safe Routes Act. The bill would allow trucks carrying raw logs, chips and biomass at the maximum gross vehicle weight limit on state roads to travel on the interstate at that same weight within that state’s borders. A provision in the legislation would also limit the distance “overweight” trucks could travel on federal highways to 150 miles. One of the ancillary benefits this bill would deliver is that it addresses the issue of state roads converting to interstates. Currently in North Carolina, for example, several state roads that serve the eastern part of the state where many lumber and pulp and paper mills are located are scheduled to switch to interstate highways. The problem is that the state roads in North Carolina allow up to 90,000 pounds maximum gross vehicle weight. Once they switch to interstate status, the limit drops down to 80,000 pounds. The North Carolina Forestry Association and other in state interests are raising this issue with their Congressional delegation, but the Safe Routes Act is a potential solution to this issue.


A related truck weight effort has been revived to allow a series of pilot programs in selected states whereby 91,000 pound vehicles equipped with an additional sixth axle would be permitted to travel on the interstate highway system. This proposal is an iteration of a bill by former Congressman Reid Ribble (R-WI) that was pending a few years ago, but failed on a full House vote as part of the 2015 highway reauthorization bill. The relatively newly formed Safer Hauling and Infrastructure Protection (SHIP) Coalition comprised of large shippers that are reliant on trucks, has retooled the Ribble proposal from a nationwide state opt-in measure to a more focused pilot program approach. Opposition from the Class 1 railroads is what killed the Ribble bill back in 2015 and continues to hamper progress on reforming truck weights. The more narrow, pilot program approach is aimed at softening opposition from the railroads, but also addressing one of the key concerns from the Department of Transportation that there is insufficient operational data about the impact of 91,000 pound, 6-axle rigs on pavement

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consumption, safety and other metrics. Proponents argue that enacting these pilots would provide the needed data and show conclusively that these rigs are safe and provide considerable efficiencies for companies moving finished product from the mill to the market. The SHIP Coalition which is populated by large forest products companies, brewers and other manufacturers of heavy products that typically “weigh out before the truck cubes out” are working the Congressional appropriations process to enact these pilots. The Hardwood Federation will keep you apprised of progress on this effort.


The final proposal that we are tracking is legislation that attempts to address the shortage of qualified truck drivers in the U.S. The bill is called the Developing Responsible Individuals for a Vibrant Economy Safe (DRIVE) Act and would create an apprenticeship program to train 18-21 year old drivers to operate commercial vehicles on the interstate. Currently, drivers in this age range may operate commercial vehicles within a particular state, but cannot cross state lines. This dynamic makes it difficult for interstate carriers to enter into long-term, valuable relationships with them. The bills (S. 569 and H.R. 1374, by Senators Todd Young (R-IN) and Trey Hollingsworth (R-IN), respectively) would set up an apprenticeship program for these young drivers comprised of 400 hours, 240 of which must be drive time with an experienced driver. Young drivers would also be equipped with automatic transmissions and safety equipment such as automatic braking. The truck driver shortage in the U.S. is a real concern across the economy. Currently, the average age of a trucker in the U.S. is over 50 years old, a data point that dramatically underscores the need for an infusion of younger drivers entering and remaining in the profession. In fact, only 20 percent of drivers on the road today are between 20 and 34 years old. Estimates suggest that almost 1 million new drivers will be needed over the next decade to keep up with truck transport demand. While certainly not a panacea, the DRIVE Act is a sensible first step in attempting to address the issue. There are a number of groups lobbying aggressively for enactment of this legislation, including the National Association of Manufacturers, the American Trucking Association, the National Retail Federation and others. Again, the Hardwood Federation is tracking all of these developments closely and will keep our eyes open for other proposals that may surface to help increase efficiencies and reduce our transportation costs.

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w h a t l e a d e l o o k s l i k e

s h i p IF YOU ARE LUCKY, at some point in your career you have worked for a manager who recognized his or her responsibilities to their team. This person was more than likely confident, decisive and was able to make the right decisions that helped move you, and your team forward. They were future focused and may have taught you the importance of planning and execution as a means to reaching team goals. And he or she always, always took care of their team first. Congratulations, you are fortunate enough to have worked with a real leader.

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eadership is a favorite topic of business pundits who have authored literally hundreds of thousands of business self-help books, online articles and educational seminars focused on the qualifications for leadership.

extraordinary things? What personality traits do leaders possess that encouraged such devotion? And last, but most importantly, how do you identify such leaders and hire them?


Most experienced leaders understand that leadership is not a journey, but a destination. It is not something one ever really achieves. Whether you have been in business five years or 30, true leaders never stop learning, adjusting, and adapting.

Perhaps Jim Collins leadership expert and author of “Good To Great” fame said it best when he described leaders as “ordinary people who do extraordinary things.”

John Maxwell, another renowned leadership expert supports the concept of the “leadership journey” in his “Levels of Leadership:” • Level 1 – Leaders understand and embrace the need for continual improvement.

There are not enough pages in the magazine to answer that question completely!

Peter Drucker, the management consultant widely credited for being the father of modern business, definition of a leader was equally concise – “the only true definition of leadership is someone who has followers." Both Drucker and Collins’ definitions describe the result, or by-product of an effective leader. The real question is how did the leader inspire the follower to follow? How are they able to do


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• Level 2 - Leaders understand the responsibilities of leadership, and that they must give people a reason to follow them. • Level 3 – Leaders produce results by knowing how to motivate others to get the job done. • Level 4 – Leaders invest in people development. They understand the importance of identifying, developing and investing in future leaders. W W W. N H L A .C O M

Most experienced leaders understand that leadership is not a journey, but a destination.

Meyers Briggs, another leading personality testing company defines the “natural” leadership profile as an ENTJ (Extraverted, Intuitive, Thinker, Judgmental). According to the company, only 4% of the population fit the ENTJ personality profile. Women ENTJs are rarer, representing only 2.5% of the population. ENTJs are defined as leaders because they possess the following personality traits normally characterized as “leadership attributes.” • Charismatic and confident • Extraverted, intuitive, and highly intelligent • Future oriented and equally adept at managing challenges as well as opportunities • Goal oriented, hardworking, and ambitious • Logical and objective World leaders like Franklin D. Roosevelt and Margaret Thatcher were ENTJs, as were famous scientists like Carl Sagan and Wernher von Braun. ENTJ tech leaders include Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, and Sheryl Sandburg. All very different people with very different approaches to leadership. Some like Jobs and Gates were authoritarian and controlling in their management approach, others like Sandburg and Roosevelt, more collaborative in their leadership style.

That’s a good start in knowing the questions to ask during the hiring process, but there has to be more.

There is no magic formula in determining what personality will make an effective leader because there is a downside to every “leader” characteristic included in the ENTJ profile.

We do know that a wide variety of management experts, scientists and psychologists believe there are some men and women who are born with an innate skill to lead others. There is some truth to that theory. Scientists have proven in controlled tests that some subjects have an inherited trait identified as extraversion – more about that later.

Consider a former co-worker of mine who was fond of saying he had been a leader since he was a young boy. He was 60 at the time. His lofty opinion was based on one life experience – being picked as the quarterback for a Pop Warner football team. It seems his leadership journey was achieved at the ripe old age of 12. His personality profile was, you guessed it, ENTJ.

Extraversion is just one of the many personality traits that define a leader. Not all leaders are extraverts, and there is no one personality that defines leadership.What the individual does with both the strengths and weaknesses of their personality style is up to them and is influenced by both nature and nurture.

My friend the football player provides a great example of the vagaries of the ENTJ leadership profile. ENTJs can be overly confident, stubborn, arrogant, domineering and intolerant of different opinions. Consider that Vladimir Putin is an ENTJ. Even the great Star Wars villain Darth Vadar makes the cut.

If true leadership is not a genetic gift, passed from one generation to another, then what are the traits or personality styles that define a leader? How does one recognize what a leader looks like? What type of leaders do you need to help make your company successful?

If the extraverted ENTJ is considered to possess the classic leadership profile, what about the introverts?

Utilizing personality testing companies have become extremely popular with businesses in search of individuals with leaders at every level of their organization. In a recent survey of business managers conducted by Predictive Index, a leading personality testing firm, the top desired leadership traits were work ethic, followed by honesty, confidence, positive attitude, and a sense a humor. W W W. N H L A .C O M

Science and Harvard Business Review research have disproven the assumption that ENTJs alone are wired for leadership. Harvard found that introverts can actually be more effective leaders than an ENTJ, particularly in complex business models. Because INTJs as a rule are more motivated by “getting a job done” rather than ambition, they also have the leadership potential to contribute more to achieving long-term goals. If an ENTJ is the “Field Marshall,” leader, then the INTJ is the “Mastermind.” Only 2% of the population are INTJs. Female M AY 2 0 1 9 H A R D W O O D M AT T E R S |


Perhaps the most important trait of an effective leader is the ability to be self-aware of the pros and cons of their personality and its influence on their leadership style. INTJS are more rare, making up just .8%. Thomas Jefferson displayed INTF characteristics as did Susan B. Anthony and Dwight Eisenhower. Tech leaders Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are both INTJ leaders. INTJs are: • Introverted • Perfectionist • Skeptical • Highly analytical • Creative • Prefers logic over emotion There are downsides to every personality and the INTJ leader is no exception. INTJs can take introversion too far, making it seem as if they are disconnected from their team. They are often overly skeptical and disconnected from the world around them, making them appear unapproachable. An INTJ boss is also prone to being characterized as a “control freak” by their staff. Add that trait to


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their tendency towards procrastination means that their leadership style can negatively impact a team’s performance. Personality attributes for leadership attributes is not an exact science for one simple reason – humans are involved. Most managers rely on their dominant styles most of the time. After all it is very hard to change personality. Experienced leaders understand they must adapt their leadership skills to the unique situations they encounter, and always be focused on learning. For example, ENTJ leaders may have a tendency to overwhelm staff with their enthusiasm and the rapid fire of new ideas, INTJ’s must remember to connect with their teams, and servant leaders must understand that it is not all about empowering their staff, empowerment must produce results. Perhaps the most important trait of an effective leader is the ability to be self-aware of the pros and cons of their personality and its influence on their leadership style. In a recent management survey 99.9% of respondents said that self-awareness is the number one trait for effective leaders. That means perfecting their ability to adapt and modify their personality styles to fit unique circumstances. The ability to adapt and learn are two of the most critically important traits of an effective leader. W W W. N H L A .C O M


Research has shown us that that while male and female leaders leadership styles are very different, both can be equally effective. Males are more prone to a “take charge” approach, females are more likely to employ a “take care” style. Males are typically characterized as transactional in their management style. A transactional leader will usually operate within the existing boundaries of a company’s processes, structures and goals. When confronted with a challenge, a transactional leader with create a path for his team, provide clear directions, and often create competitions within their teams in order to achieve goals. In contrast, female transformative leaders may be more collaborative, and change oriented in their leadership approach. Women leaders also tend to focus on motivation, and engagement of teams. They stimulate employees to be creative as the means to exceed performance goals.



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Of course, both leadership styles can be equally effective depending on the business situation. Utilizing personality testing in hiring the next leader for your company will certainly not provide you with all of the answers. Testing simply helps hiring managers ask and analyze an applicant’s answers more effectively. Such testing can also provide your existing employees with an awareness of their potential and how to interact with different personality styles.

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Inventory Management to Control Log Stain by DANA SPESSERT, NHLA Chief Inspector


pring is here, and we may finally be able to put the wet weather behind us and tackle the many challenges that are a direct result of the winter weather. As a former logger and sawmill owner, I have lived through weather pitfalls. Let’s discuss. As a logger, once the rain starts falling, you are restricted in many ways by nature and as a result you adjust your process. One adjustment I always made was to never stop cutting trees. Instead, I simply stockpiled them in the woods and waited for a clear, dry day to haul them to the mill. This was the only way I could exist in the logging industry, but it does have its negative side effects - number one being STAIN. After a very wet season, sawmills will notice a lot of logs that seem to be much older and show signs of degrading. This condition is directly related to the length of time since being cut and then the time spent stockpiled. It is critical to implement the practice of “first in - first out” inventory strategy, immediately after a long, wet season. I have heard it said, on more than one occasion, that the lumber was “dead-piled” for too long and thus the reason for stain in the sapwood. The fact is, wood begins to dry immediately upon the first cut, so it should be processed immediately, and the drying process controlled to minimize the negative effects to the wood. This brings me to my point for this month’s article, stain and its effect on grading. As we begin to cut lumber from the logs that were in a very bad environment for drying (piled at the landing), we start to see streaks and discoloration from the ends of the log and sometimes in areas where the bark was scraped off. This is considered stain, whether enzymatic or fungal and will cause degrade in the lumber. I have witnessed several strategies over the years to try and combat staining and they all involve inventory management. Although cutting the oldest logs first may not coincide with your need to fill orders on quick turnaround species such as poplar or soft maple, it is the best method of combating stain. Ultimately, I suggest shorter and smaller log piles at the mill and sorting by grade and age. This strategy will give sufficient runtimes


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at the mill to lessen the impact of species change-overs while maintaining a “first in – first out” inventory. Dip chemicals are a very good tool to utilize when the time period from sawing to stacking or yarding, is an issue, it is not the solution for log stain. Log stain cannot be reversed once it has begun. Bottom line . . . saw the logs before they have an opportunity to stain, start the “controlled” drying process on the lumber as soon as possible and dip when needed to control the stain. As always, I stand at the ready to answer your lumber grading questions. Contact me at d.spessert@nhla.com or at 901-399-7551 or send me your questions on Facebook Live with the Chief.

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NHLA helps hardwood companies achieve profitability and solve their top business challenges with data-driven, expert advice and hands-on training with our dedicated team of National Inspectors. How Can We Help You Reach Your Goals? Let's Talk!

Meet Simon Laroque

Specialty: Birch Inspection, Dispute Resolution, Lumber Inspection, Maple and Walnut Inspection, and Training Territory: Canada Simon graduated from the Duchesnay School of Forestry in 1997, and has worked for NHLA since 1998. Since that time, he has been providing members with inspection services, with a focus on birch, walnut and maple. He is also a recognized training expert. He has a degree in computer programming, but soon found his way to the hardwood lumber industry. Simon can be reached at 819-712-1640 or by email at s.larocque@nhla.com.

Simon’s favorite thing about working in the hardwood industry is collaborating with family-owned businesses to help them become as profitable as possible.

To find the National Inspector in your area visit NHLA.com.

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EDUCATION & TRAINING For hardwood business owners and their employees Register for classes at www.nhla.com.





20-July 26




Inspector Training School 189th Class

Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Inspector Training School Progressive Program BLOCK 1

Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Traditional 10-week hands-on training to achieve the certificate of completion in Hardwood Lumber Inspection. Venue: NTC Wood Technology Center of Excellence Antigo, WI Instructor: Rich Hascher, NHLA ITS Instructor

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber. Venue: Dabney S. Lancaster College Clifton Forge, VA Instructor: Barry Kibbey NHLA National Inspector

Venue: Dabney S. Lancaster College Clifton Forge, VA

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.

Instructor: Barry Kibbey and Mark Depp NHLA National Inspectors

Venue: North Carolina State University - Hodges Wood Products Lab Raleigh, NC

Block 2: Online study Block 3: Three weeks handson training and final testing at NHLA headquarters.

Instructor: Mark Depp NHLA National Inspector









Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Inspector Training School Progressive Program BLOCK 1

Inspector Training School Proagressive Program BLOCK 1

Venue: Ron Jones Hardwoods Franklin, PA

Venue: NHLA Headquarters Memphis, TN

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.

Venue: Yoder Lumber Company, Inc. Millersburg, OH

Venue: Ron Jones Hardwoods Franklin, PA

Instructor: Barry Kibbey NHLA National Inspector


Two weeks of hands-on training.

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Instructor: Tom Byers NHLA National Inspector

Two weeks of hands-on training.

Instructor: Tom Byers NHLA National Inspector Block 2: Online study Block 3: Three weeks handson training and final testing at NHLA headquarters.

Two weeks of hands-on training.

Instructor: Rich Hascher, NHLA ITS Instructor Block 2: Online study Block 3: Three weeks handson training and final testing at NHLA headquarters. W W W. N H L A .C O M

EDUCATION IS KEY TO YOUR COMPANY’S SUCCESS “In January 1973, E. N. Beard Hardwood sent me to Memphis. This opened the door to a lifelong wonderful career. Sales, purchasing (green and kiln dried) for over 40 years but more importantly, I inspected/graded at least once a week. I served three years on the rules committee and being semi-retired I still enjoy turning boards at least three days a week on a contract basis. Needless to say the school, I feel, was the opportunity of a life time.” — Robert Clark







4-Nov. 22


Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Inspector Training School Progressive Program BLOCK 1

Inspector Training School 190th Class

Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber. Venue: Northwest Hardwoods Marion, NC Instructor: Mark Bear NHLA National Inspector

Two weeks of hands-on training.

Venue: Northwest Hardwoods Marion, NC Instructor: Mark Bear NHLA National Inspector Block 2: Online study Block 3: Three weeks handson training and final testing at NHLA headquarters.




28-Nov. 9

Intro to Hardwood Lumber Grading

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber. Venue: Purdue University West Lafayette, IN Instructors: Barry Kibbey, and Kevin Evilsizer, NHLA National Inspectors

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Traditional 12-week hands-on training to achieve the certificate of completion in Hardwood Lumber Inspection. Venue: NHLA Headquarters Memphis, TN Instructor: Rich Hascher, NHLA ITS Instructor

Venue: Wood-Mizer, LLC Indianapolis, IN Instructor: Barry Kibbey NHLA National Inspector



Inspector Training School Progressive Program BLOCK 1

Inspector Training School Progressive Program BLOCK 1

Venue: Purdue University West Lafayette, IN

Venue: NHLA Headquarters Memphis, TN

Instructors: Barry Kibbey, and Kevin Evilsizer, NHLA National Inspectors

Instructor: Rich Hascher, NHLA ITS Instructor

Block 2: Online study Block 3: Three weeks handson training and final testing at NHLA headquarters.

Block 2: Online study Block 3: Three weeks handson training and final testing at NHLA headquarters.

Two weeks of hands-on training.

Intro class to gain a basic understanding of the NHLA hardwood lumber grading rules and how the rules affect the value of lumber.

Two weeks of hands-on training.

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Hull Forest Products seeks a well-organized, energetic, and motivated individual to lead its wide plank wood flooring shop and optimize material flow within its manufacturing system. Candidate must be a team leader with material planning and inventory management skills, mechanical aptitude, and working knowledge of MS Excel. Woodworking experience preferred. This position includes precision machine set-up and working alongside team members in the wood flooring shop. EXPERIENCE REQUIRED: Precision Machine Set-Up, Woodworking, Team Management PERKS: This is a full-time position with hourly pay and benefits, including 401K, health insurance, and discounted firewood. We offer a fun work environment with room for growth! To apply email resume to info@hullforest.com. Hull Forest Products, Inc. 101 Hampton Road | Pomfret Center, CT 06259 Phone: 860-974-0127 | www.hullforest.com


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Billsby Lumber Co. is seeking a head sawyer, lumber grader who has NHLA grading experience. We offer a competitive benefits package. To apply, email your resume to Lori Manley at lori@billsbylumber.com. Billsby Lumber Co. 2725 Larch Road | Harrison, Michigan 48625 Phone: 989-539-9842

* To view current job postings or to post a job, visit www.nhla.com/industry-services/job-board.

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In it for the long haul. Our commitment to the lumber and building materials industry began more than 40 years ago. The knowledge we’ve gained is put into software that elevates each aspect of your operation, including partnerships. Our vendor interfaces keep you connected to streamline processes, reduce errors and optimize inventory. It’s another way we help keep your business moving forward. Today and for always.

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October 2-4

Early Bird Is Open

Register Today! Register at www.NHLA.com

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