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One Community, Many Opportunities

Welcome to the July-August issue of floriology magazine. I realize this may be the first time many of you are seeing my name. So, by way of introduction, I am Dinesh Popat, the new President of BloomNet. I look forward with much excitement to the distinct pleasure of serving the BloomNet family and our industry of retail florists.

Since joining the BloomNet team, I have been highly impressed, and inspired, by what I have experienced so far – specifically, the creativity, passion and floral design artistry of flower shop owners and their unwavering dedication to providing personal customer service as only a local business can.

Before sitting down to write this, my first letter for floriology magazine, I considered several possible themes I would like to express. And my mind, along with my keyboard, kept coming back to a single word that in many ways defines local florists: community.

Certainly, the floral industry and florists in particular embody a sense of community in numerous ways…they are eager to share ideas, to work together, to grow the industry as a whole so everyone can thrive and prosper. Florists are also true artisans, incredibly imaginative people with tremendous passion for what they do. Underscoring those traits, and the opportunities that come with them, is a commitment throughout the floral marketplace to education.

In this edition of floriology, our annual education issue, we are excited to present many of the opportunites continuing education can bring to a retail flower shop. Taking courses in different aspects of floral design, for example, can jump-start and expand the inspirations of even the most seasoned designers while honing the skills and generating new possibilities for designers who are just starting out.

In addition to floral design courses, informative courses in best business practices can help sharpen the operational efficiencies of flower shops large and small – providing shop owners with strategies that can enhance how they run their businesses. In fact, I recently attended a course at Floriology Institute and left feeling energized and rejuvenated.

Complementing the educational resources described above, Floriology can provide crucial information about the latest consumer trends, most notably the recent innovations in the digital commerce experience, providing ease and convenience for consumers to locate retailers, shop, buy and arrange delivery. There is a great need for our industry to embrace these new innovative platforms, as they offer tremendous opportunities for retail florists. Our experts can assist florists in optimizing the newest technologies, helping florists stay on the forefront of the continually evolving digital commerce marketplace.

Another way florists can stay a step ahead is via trade shows and events. Summer is a great time to take advantage of industry events that offer opportunities to network with fellow florists and also gain educational insights by attending workshops and breakout sessions presented by leading floral and business experts. (See “What’s On Tap” on this page for several industry events happening this summer.)

Speaking of events, I recently attended my first AIFD (American Institute of Floral Designers) National Symposium. This thrilling gathering in Las Vegas provided me with a terrific opportunity to interact with florists from across the country.

Also during the Symposium, we celebrated a wonderful achievement by Jackie Lacey, AAF, AIFD, CFD, PFCI, BloomNet Director of Education and Industry Relations. Jackie was officially named 2019/2020 AIFD National President. What’s more, I am proud to say that 9 students from our Floriology Institute curriculum were inducted into the American Institute of Floral Designers, representing 14% of this year’s overall inductees. Congratulations to everyone who was inducted!

In closing, I want to take a moment to look ahead to the future of floriology magazine. We have received extensive feedback about how much our readers enjoy this magazine, however we are not resting on our laurels. As part of our ongoing efforts to foster community and enhance the foundation for continuing education in the floral industry, we will be introducing new enhancements to the magazine designed to broaden the sharing of knowledge… including an all-new digital experience. Look for exciting, new innovative solutions from Floriology throughout this upcoming year.

I hope you enjoy this issue of floriology magazine, and have a great summer!