Pricing the Forgettable Last Five Percent

By Dr. Albert D. Bates, President, Profit Planning Group Most distributors continue to lament the pervasive, and possibly increasing, pressures on gross margin percentages. Seemingly, price is outweighing almost every other factor in the competitive arsenal. At the same time, gross margin is one of the “big two” in increasing profits for distributors (the other […]

Facing Inflation

Keeping your company prepared for an inflationary environment By Steve Guglielmo and Mike Vaughan “The industry may be facing an inflationary environment within the next 3-5 years and members need to understand and be prepared to operate their businesses during these conditions.” – MHEDA 2015 Critical Impact Factor Number 12 The past four years have […]

Turning Sales into Profit

Takeaways from MHEDA’s DiSC Report By Al Bates Every analysis of distributor profitability comes to the same conclusions: Three key factors drive profitability. Those factors are (1) the ability to increase sales a little faster than inflation, (2) the ability to maintain an adequate gross margin in the face of competitive pressures and (3) maintaining […]

Growth As Strategy

How to strategically plan and execute a growth strategy By Jerry Weidmann Successful, profitable growth at a rate greater than the economy grows requires strategic planning. Strategic planning is a critical component of running a successful business. It is one of our core tenets at Wisconsin Lift Truck and it is one of the pillars […]

Benchmarking, What’s it All About?

By Robin Currie If you’re a member of a Currie Management Consultants, Inc. Best Practices Group, or if you’ve attended the annual Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association, you’ve likely heard Bob Currie lecture on the importance of benchmarking. A Benchmark is defined as a standard against which the performance of a company can be measured. […]

Design of the MHEDA DiSC Report

The Helicopter View By Robin Currie People—every equipment distribution company’s best asset.  Your staff can also pose your company’s biggest challenge as well.  One way to best understand your employees is to gain some knowledge about Karl Jung and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.  These theories assist us in learning about ourselves and others through 1 […]

Fleet Centricity and Finance Partners

By Theo Rennenberg Many manufacturers and their dealer networks are challenged by two seemingly opposing needs related to large fleet and major account customers: 1. How to develop and execute innovative solutions that lower their customer’s Total Cost of Ownership (TCO); and 2. How to sell new and used equipment in order to maintain market […]

Inside, Outside or Upside Down

10 frequently asked questions about ownership transfer By P. Andrew Limes There are four transactions most often associated with investment banking. Those include selling, recapitalizing, acquiring, and raising debt or equity. For many business owners considering a transaction, one of the most difficult questions to answer is the first one that arises: “What are the […]

The 2014 MHEDA DiSC Report

By Robin Currie  It’s time to prepare for this year’s MHEDA DiSC Report for the Industrial Truck, Engineered Systems and Storage & Handling industries. Let’s take a quick look back at some of the highlights from last year’s industry report. The Currie team places substantial emphasis on the Return on Assets measure, especially in the […]

Greening the Supply Chain through Systems Thinking and Collaboration

By Julie Urlaub Sustainability has been described as a continuous improvement process that challenges business to balance organizational needs with the shifting expectations of their stakeholders. This balance can be demonstrated by a consumer rise in eco-friendly business, innovation, technological advancement, or mutually beneficial proactive change. While sometimes seen as an overwhelming landscape of potential […]