The sixth America’s Best Cleaners Leadership Forum wrapped up on 10 February and, according to the organisers, was the most forward-thinking Forum yet, bringing the leaders of the drycleaning industry together and solidifying their camaraderie before sending them off towards the future, strong and confident.

The Forum, the final module of six, held over Zoom, focused on the perspectives of the next generation of drycleaners and their role in steering the industry towards bigger and brighter destinations. The young movers and shakers took the stage as they attempted to unpack answers to hot-button questions like how previous successes can be built upon in new, innovative ways, and how new technologies can play a role in future strategic planning and deployment. The out-of-the-box strategic thinking these youthful leaders provided, tempered with the proper reverence for tenured stakeholders and procedures, struck the perfect note for the Leadership Forum series to go out on. 

Nicole Kirby of SPOT Business Systems was on the final Panel, along with Monika Manter, vice president of Balfurd Inc; Mark Hatch; general manager of French Cleaners Inc; Joel Lyons, president of Lyons Cleaners and Evans Garment Restoration; and Nathaniel Dubasik, project director at Metalprogetti.

Kirby reported a positive experience as both panelist and attendee at various Leadership Forums, saying: “I’ve attended a few Forums prior to this one and got to see first-hand the way the drycleaning industry has banded together during the pandemic. The personal stories always struck me the most. It’s all been very moving. It was special for me to be able to be on the last Panel and offer a bit of myself in return for everything I’ve gotten from previous Forums.” said Kirby.
Manter commented: “During these difficult times, it's been wonderful to see our industry come together to share ideas and solutions. We're so appreciative that America's Best Cleaners has held these forums to facilitate sharing from positive and innovative operators. The Forums have provided our leadership team with valuable insights on how to adapt to the current business climate.”

Catherine McCann, partner and director of operations at America’s Best Cleaners, said: “I am sad to say our six months of Leadership Forums have come to an end. However, leaving things on such a positive note was fabulous. Hearing the Panelists use such important words like trust, excellence, improving lives, strategy, success, and seeing them listen carefully and effuse such positivity made me feel even more confident about our industry.”

Chris White, partner and executive director of America’s Best Cleaners, shared how impressed he was with the comradery and enthusiasm for the future the final Panel displayed. “This Panel went beyond what we envisioned in our planning. With this caliber of leadership, creativity, and imagination being deployed to solve the challenges ahead, our industry is in great hands. We couldn’t ask for a better send off to conclude this series.”
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