Furniture Wars – Food for Thought

Another perspective on the Furniture Industry

As an industry insider and vet, I was interested in Michael Dugan’s analysis in The Furniture Wars. How America Lost A Fifty Billion Dollar Industry.

Here’s my take away on this book based on online info. My interest is his analysis on how to run a next generation, successful furniture company, considering cautionary tales in the industry. Food for thought as Yancey and I work on our ModHome Collection and growing BYdesign as a start up (aka “greenfield”).

  1. Use TPS (Toyota Production System) – it’s a good discipline for continuous improvement and survival in a tough environment.
  2. Stay Small and Nimble – no longer any economies of scale.
  3. Stay Private, Keep Control – resist the urge to sell out.
  4. No Brand – Brand is not important in this industry, concentrate on quality and service.
  5. Don’t Expand Too Fast – concentrate instead on building a good company and growth will come.
  6. Find A Niche, an opening, a need in the marketplace and exploit that.
  7. Don’t diversify too soon. Into upholstery, for example, if your are a wood (case goods) expert. Wait until you are strong and ready, don’t push it.
  8. Be Better Not Bigger – from better will come growth.
  9. Focus on long-term profits - don’t outsource production to China for short-term profit.
  10. Have Some Fun!

 Shine on! Braxton