Celebrate National Tradesmen Day
September 16, 2011

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WHO: IRWIN® Tools, founder and primary “force” in support of a new day-of-recognition for America’s professional tradesmen.

WHAT: NATIONAL TRADESMEN DAY – An annual day of recognition for America’s professional tradesmen. A celebration of the men and women who build America and keep it running strong.

WHERE: At the national level, and in communities all across America, media, retailers, leaders,
businesses and families will celebrate this day to demonstrate their appreciation for
professional tradesmen and the significant role they play in our lives every day.

WHEN: Friday, September 16, 2011 (the inaugural year). The event will occur annually on the 3rd
Friday in September.

WHY: IRWIN Tools is initiating National Tradesmen Day to honor and celebrate America’s professional tradesmen, with the inaugural event slated for September 16, 2011. This national day of recognition will bring together all Americans to salute our nation’s tradesmen – “The Hands that Build America.”

In communities across the nation, IRWIN aims to heighten awareness of the role of professional tradesmen, who contribute so meaningfully to our lives in so many ways. From building our homes, schools, and churches; to keeping our cars running; to keeping our lights on and keeping us warm; to fixing our leaky pipes – America’s professional tradesmen are the backbone of our great nation.

While IRWIN is the founder and key impetus behind this annual event, tradesmen will be the central focus of the occasion.

HOW: On September 16, 2011, it’s our hope that each of you will help us celebrate National Tradesmen Day in the simplest of ways: Just say “Thanks” to the professional tradesmen who are all around you.

What Can YOU Do? The Possibilities are Endless!

On National Tradesmen Day on September 16, 2011, all IRWIN employees will be spending part of the day saying thanks to professional tradespeople. For most of us, we will focus on National Tradesmen Day itself. For some however (such as our sales representatives, key accounts team, and customer service), the celebration might take place throughout the week.

How can you say thanks? It’s really up to you! The possibilities are truly endless. Not feeling all that
creative? Here are a few suggestions to get the ideas flowing:

  • Visit a jobsite, and simply say “thanks” (consider taking a box of donuts!)
  • Don’t just think of large commercial or residential construction jobsites (although those are great too!). Remember to think about all the independent contractors who may work for themselves or for small businesses, such as plumbers, electricians, auto technicians, roofers, drywall installers, siding installers, refrigeration and HVAC technicians, maintenance and repair professionals, etc.
  • Visit your local home improvement or hardware store, and say “thanks” to tradesmen as they make their material and tool purchases for the day’s jobs. You might even pay for their purchases in some instances.
  • Know a neighbor who’s having carpet or tile installed, having their kitchen remodeled, or having an electrician or plumber in their home to do some work? Stop by and tell that tradesman thanks.
  • Have family or friends who are tradesmen? Tell them thanks!
  • Some departments like Customer Service might answer the phones with a message about National Tradesmen Day (i.e., “Friday, September 16th is National Tradesmen Day.”)
  • Stop by your neighborhood convenience store (preferably first thing in the morning). You’ll recognize tradesmen in many cases by the logo on the side of the truck or van they drive. Ask them what they do for a living. Tell them it’s National Tradesmen Day. Then tell them thanks, and offer to buy their morning coffee.
  • See above. Try it at Burger King, McDonalds, or Taco Bell during lunchtime.
  • Know a restaurant that’s frequented by tradesmen during lunch? Stop by and offer to buy them lunch.
  • Have a favorite automotive mechanic? Don’t forget to thank him/her!
  • Have a spouse or friend who works somewhere that might have tradesmen on staff? Visit them and say thanks.
  • Partner with a customer to host a contractor breakfast or lunch (at a customer’s location).
  • Look for tradesmen at your local grocery store, school, etc.
  • Do you live in an apartment that has a maintenance person? Don’t forget to thank him/her!
  • Your idea here.
  • Your idea here.
  • Your idea here!

Important Note: If you choose to provide coffee, donuts, lunch, gift cards, etc., you will be using your own T&E credit card/budget. Please use discretion with these purchases! You will have plenty of premiums and apparel to give to tradesmen.

What IRWIN Will Provide

To celebrate National Tradesmen Day, visiting jobsites isn’t about doing product demonstrations or seeding product. It’s simply about saying “Thanks.” To support your efforts, IRWIN will provide some fun National Tradesmen Day items that you can give away as a token of our appreciation, including:

  • T-shirts
  • Buttons
  • Hardhat, Lunchbox, and Toolbox Stickers
  • Magnets
  • Koozies
  • Wrist Bands

If you’re located in the Charlotte area, these items will be provided for you to pick up prior to National Tradesmen Day. If you work remotely (i.e., sales team and key accounts team), you will be receiving a “kit” with plenty of giveaways.

All employees will receive their own t-shirt to wear on National Tradesmen Day.

What’s Next?

1. Form “teams” according to the department/function you work within:

  • Product Marketing
  • Channel Marketing
  • Marketing Communications
  • Finance
  • Human Resources
  • Customer Service
  • Operations and Sourcing
  • Planning and Logistics
  • R&D and Engineering (don’t forget the lab!)
  • Package Engineering
  • Training

2. Choose a team leader (if you wish).

3. Collaborate with your team to determine a plan for getting out of the office on September 16th to celebrate National Tradesmen Day.

4. Wear your National Tradesmen Day t-shirts, and get out there and say “Thanks!”

5. Remember to take pictures, and gather success stories and testimonials (many tradesmen will be very flattered just by being recognized for their hard work, and we’d love to hear about it!). Submit the best stories and/or pictures to nationaltradesmenday@irwin.com. Submittals are not mandatory, but there will be prizes for the best ways that IRWIN employees celebrate National Tradesmen Day.

Not interested in being on a team? No problem. If you’re more comfortable with getting out on your own, feel free. Don’t forget… it’s simply about celebrating National Tradesmen Day by saying “thanks” to the men and women who contribute so meaningfully to our lives each and every day.

Important Note: Keep in mind that some jobsites, manufacturing facilities, and maintenance facilities require protective safety gear (hardhats, steel-toed boots, safety glasses, etc.). If your team plans to visit these types of facilities or jobsites, be sure you are aware of any safety restrictions and that you take the proper precautions.


What to Say

Want to know what to say as you approach tradesmen on National Tradesmen Day? It’s really pretty simple! There’s no need to be formal. Just do what you’re comfortable with. And remember that the day isn’t about touting our products’ features and benefits – it’s simply about saying “thanks.” So you shouldn’t be worried about tripping up over product communication. Just be yourself. Here are a few tips:

If you visit a jobsite near your home, or you’re at a restaurant, convenience store, or other retail setting, and you see people who appear to be tradesmen approaching you, you can say something as simple as:

“Hey there. I work for IRWIN Tools. I noticed your truck says [Hendricks Plumbing]. Are you a plumber? Well, today is National Tradesmen Day, and on behalf of IRWIN Tools, I’d like to say thanks for keeping our water flowing and our toilets unplugged! I’ve got some cool t-shirts [insert other items if you want] that you can have in honor of National Tradesmen Day.”

If that’s too much of a mouthful, just say:

“Today is National Tradesmen Day. I work for IRWIN Tools, and in honor of National Tradesmen Day, I’d like to say ‘thanks’ for all that you do as a [plumber]. I’ve got a few small tokens of appreciation for you.”

If you feel comfortable saying a lot more, try something like this:

“Hey there. Today is National Tradesmen Day. Can I tell you a little about it? America’s professional tradesmen are the backbone of our great nation. They build our homes, roads, businesses, and schools. They keep our cars running, our lights on, our water flowing, and so much more. Think about what the world would be like if we didn’t have plumbers, electricians, maintenance and repair professionals, siding installers — or someone to fix our air conditioning when it goes out on a 98- degree day! Well, IRWIN Tools feels that our nation’s tradesmen deserve a national day of recognition.  So IRWIN has created a day just for them — a day to celebrate all that they do to contribute so meaningfully to our lives in so many ways. It’s our hope that our entire nation will celebrate with us.”


Download this document in a PDF here.