Annual Conference

Working For...Value!

One of the working committees of the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association is our Membership Committee. We meet on a regular basis with one goal, "What can we do to create real value for our members...existing or otherwise." Our president Scott Schelling from Rock Valley Tractor Parts chairs the Benefits Image meeting and when we get to Member Benefits with Stephen Haas from DLS Worldwide things get really interesting.

While we can't yet share all of the new member benefits, because the Board has to ratify them at their next meeting, they are, in a word AMAZING! Should a member take advantage of any of these existing or soon to be announced benefits your benefits will pay for your membership. That's right. Use the benefits and your annual membership to NTPDA is...well, covered.

One of the things we can share is that over the next several months members of this committee will be touching base with former and current members who operate near the Minneapolis/St. Paul area. Our Summer Event (formerly known as The Summer Board Meeting and for a very short time Summer Smash) will be inviting business owners/managers to come and hang out with us in Minnesota. Get to know the members and leadership team and become more active.

The dates for our event are July 11 - 14. It's not to early to pencil the date in. We promise not only a good time but also information and ideas that will help move you and your business forward.  As always, should you have thoughts, ideas or suggestions make it a point to connect with us! Shoot us an email NTPDA@NTPDA.COM or follow us on Twitter @NTPDA or here is our Facebook Page.

Bam!  Oh...one other thing for our friends up north.  We hear you got...snow...again. Could somebody please turn the calendar to April?

 


It's Like Family...

Being part of the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association is more, much more, than simply doing business. Sure, we trade with each other, sometimes Doug and Phyllisprotecting our turf but more often than not we honestly care for each other.  Over the years we've become more like family than an association. New members that join us can tell that right away. There is an honest respect and love for each other.

That's why the passing of our Immediate Past President Doug Swanson is so tough to take. Doug, from Abilene Machine has been with NTPDA for decades. He has served, faithfully, on the Board of Directors and recently took the job of Board President. We knew, when we were in Corpus Christi last month, that Doug was putting up a fight against the cancer that he would often say, "Just sucks". His fellow Board Members and attendees were all hopeful that he would pull through and get back at it.

That was not to be and sadly our friend passed away as the new month began. And, it hurts.

Today we remember his family, friends, co-workers at Abilene Machine and all who were touched by him, his story, his business and his laughter.

We don't know if it's like this with other associations but we know what it's like here.

UPDATE:

A Celebration of Life will be Friday, February 9, 2018, from 4-8 p.m., at Ryan Mortuary, 137 N. Eighth St., Salina, KS

In lieu of flowers a card, message, blessing can be sent to Doug's daughter - Taylor Swanson,  1015 N. 9th, Salina, KS 67401

Please keep Doug's family, friends and everyone at Abilene Machine in your thoughts and prayers.

Here is a link to the obituary.

Thank you for being with NTPDA...

The photo (with Doug and Phyllis) is from our time together at a recent Annual Meeting and Trade Show.  We will always remember.


Oh, The Memories - NTPDA18 with Elizabeth Fawcett

Just after our time together in Corpus Christi we reached out to those of who attended to give us some feedback on your time during the NTPDA Annual Meeting and Trade Show. Elizabeth Fawcett from Fawcett Tractor Supply offers these thoughts:

We had an amazing time visiting and building relationships. The weather was not ‘Texas’ weather but still much warmer than Canada. The Jeff and Elizabeth Jan 2018 hotel was wonderful aside from the construction happening on some people’s patios, but we are tough, rural folk and managed just fine.

The training from Richard and Crystal was amazing. I can’t begin to explain how crucial good training is and I feel as though it was delivered this year. We learned about some tough leadership issues that everyone who deals with people encounter. We also learned about some of the tricks about social media and a little bit of a good intro to those who are overwhelmed by the options.

The trade show was as good as I always remember it to be; we had some new faces that left some impressions (the Steiner Girls) and the tasty baklava from the gentlemen at Keba; these were just a couple of the great product conversations and good times shared.

As a new board member, and the youngest, I am excited for the upcoming term and very eager to learn from those around me – I feel like I’m among some folks that have a lot to teach (not an age reference, I promise) and I look forward to continuing our good times this summer at the Summer Conference in Minneapolis. I also found out that not everyone knew that the Summer Conference was open to everyone – it’s not just a board meeting! If it’s anything like the Annual Conference and Trade Show, it’s bound to be a great time! (Me with former president Jeff Griggs)

Meanwhile, back to Corpus Christi!

Now the banquet, that was something else! Phyllis outdid herself with the food choices and the music (again). There was a dance floor that got some good action with about a dozen of us dancing the banquet to a close. The auction was NTPDA18 Fog Boatamazing! We had to explain to some new-comers that yes, mailboxes go for $300 here and that’s ok because it’s all for a good cause. There was also the Chuck-challenge for Doug….Wow. Just Wow. If I had only one word to describe this crew of people it would be ‘family’. The support and love showed that night, and all through the convention was astounding. A night to remember for sure. It didn’t end there though (it rarely does); a few of us decided to stay an extra day in Texas for a deep-sea fishing adventure which turned into, well, an adventure!

We arrive to Port Aransas with fog as thick as pea soup and some less-than-equipped vessels. Some of the boats were still not fully repaired after Harvey made his way through so we didn’t have radar or GPS on the boats which made for a very challenging hide and seek game with the breakers to get back into the jetty (I just learned those words so excuse me if I misused them….). After 8-10 foot swells, a good bought of sea sickness, and very frazzled captains, we called it Lexingtonafter only 45 minutes on the water.

We all decided that wasn’t going to be the end of our day so we headed for breakfast, then naps, then some went for walks and shopping and some went to the USS Lexington – a dry-docked aircraft carrier turned museum; quite an impressive thing! With the ever-skilled Phyllis working on reservations for our group, we finished off the day with 26 of us heading to Landry’s for a delicious meal and farewells. It was an amazing trip and I am so excited to spend time with these folks again in July and January 2019; lots of laughs and learning.

 

Cheers,

Elizabeth


Corpus Christi - NTPDA18 Photos

If you missed our gathering in Corpus Christi you missed an exciting and valuable event. Sure we learned new tactics about hiring and marketing and met new people. We also had a TON of FUN. One of the great things about NTPDA Membership is the personal connections we make through the years. Here is just a small sample of our time in Corpus Christi during NTPDA18!

NTPDA18 Photos for BLOGWe hope you'll join us next year! In the meantime follow us on Facebook and on Twitter it's @NTPDA. We hope you arrived safely and are ready to put what you learned in Corpus Christi to work in your business.

Thank you all for being members of our association!


Thank You Members!

The National Tractor Parts Dealer Association is coming up next month in Corpus Christi. (If you have not yet registered here is that link.) It promises to be Thank You Written
warmer there and we've got a great line up of business education and "down-time" for all of us to enjoy. 

Each year we ask our membership if they might be willing to help NTPDA with sponsorship of our various events and each year we get to say "Thank YOU!" to a great group of members who step up to help their association. Here's an updated list of those sponsors, click through to visit them...and yep we truly appreciate the help!

 

 

 

Cocktails - Early Arrival Party – Wednesday

 All States Ag Parts
Allied Information Networks
Steiner Tractor Parts, Inc.

Reception – Early Arrival Party – Wednesday

 Reliance Power Parts
Abilene Machine, Inc.

Entertainment – Early Arrival Party – Wednesday

Memo Corporation

Refreshments during Displayer Setup – Thursday

 Plastics Unlimited

Continental Breakfast – Thursday

 Memo Corporation

Morning Break – Thursday

Fawcett Tractor Supply

Lunch – Thursday

 Allied Information Networks

Hy-Capacity, Inc.

Memo Corporation

Cocktail Reception – Thursday

 All States Ag Parts

Allied Information Networks

Memo Corporation

Welcome Reception – Thursday

 Schaefer Enterprises


Breakfast Trade Show Area – Friday

 Hy-Capacity, Inc.
Memo Corporation
TractorHouse/AuctionTime.com

Refreshments during Trade Show Hours – Friday

 Steiner Tractor Parts, Inc.

Cocktails– Friday

 All States Ag Parts
Memo Corporation

Dinner – Friday

 Allied Information Networks

Entertainment – Friday

 Steiner Tractor Parts, Inc.

 


A Month Away!

It's hard to believe that in just a month we'll be gathering for the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association Annual Trade Show and Corpus Christi SkylineConference! With all the holiday cheer and excitement it's sometimes easy to forget about the middle of January...  We get it. If you have not yet registered and made plans to join us in Corpus Christi now is the time to make that happen. Here is a link to our registration page complete with the schedule of events and our top of the line speakers.

Come to Corpus Christi, where we hope it will be much warmer, and hang out, have some fun and learn how to become a better business owner/manager/employee. (A nudge to our Canadian Members...think...warm!)

Coming up a THANK YOU to so many who have decided to help NTPDA with sponsorship. We figure a little recognition is in order...right?

See you in Corpus Christi...remember, just a month away.

Yikes!


If You Are An Early Bird!

If you are an "Early Bird" we've got great news! Our Early Bird Registration is open until Thursday evening Early Bird Special Image the 30th of November. That means you've still got time to register for our Annual Conference and Trade Show and save some significant fees.

Why do we do this? Because we want to provide you value for your NTPDA membership and we like knowing early who is coming so we might plan ahead. It's important because not only do YOU save money when you register early we save too by being able to lock in our pricing from the hotel.

This January promises to be a great year for our Annual Conference and Trade show and we hope that you and your staff will join us in Corpus Christi.

In the coming days we'll be sharing BIG THANK YOU notes to those of you who have sponsored some of our events. That too...helps your Association bring you top talent for our educational sessions.

Here is your LINK to register today before our Early Bird flies away!

 


Thankful for Saving Money!

Thanksgiving week puts us all over the edge it would seem. Family dinners, friends coming over it's enough to make us all forget about business. But, wait! Our Thanksgiving-turkeyAnnual Conference and Trade Show is coming up and we're giving you an opportunity to save money on your registration!

Now through the 30th of November you can register for the Corpus Christi based conference for just $300 per person. That's quite a savings from the price that hits on December 1st. While you're thinking of "the bird" don't forget to get your registration in...like TODAY.

Don't be a turkey (I know ENOUGH with the Thanksgiving links!) get your registration made today. And, we've made it easy to do so. Here is the link for our registration page on our National Tractor Parts Dealer Association website.

We're headed to warmer weather and some great business education in Corpus Christi. Make sure you join us so when you get back the ideas and the networking put you on the "Gravy Train". (BTW, did you know you can make your gravy in advance? Use turkey wings or a leg and cook up your gravy BEFORE the guests come and freeze it then it's heat and eat...you are welcome!)

 


You Should Be Very Afraid!

It is Halloween and the spooks are out...no really! But if you are fearful of ghosts that is nothing compared to missing the National Tractor Parts Dealer Annual Man Shock Meeting and Trade Show. Missing that adventure should really send shivers down your spine!

We'll be headed south to Corpus Christi, Texas in January and there is no time like the present to make plans to attend. We've got some frightfully dynamic events in store including our great headquarters hotel the Omni Corpus Christi. Check it out by clicking on our special page...go ahead and the price won't scare you away!

In addition to a great location we've got a boiling cauldron of great information to help you better run and manage your business! 

  • Richard Flint on Embracing Change - Folks are often scared by change but it's coming any way. Richard will offer up "Six Steps to Embracing Change" in our first session on 18 January.
  • Crystal Washington on Advanced Digital Marketing - She's baaack! Crystal was with us last year and you enjoyed her so much she is back for a second round of training. This time she will be helping you better understand the best methods of using digital (think computers and smart phones) marketing. She will also be presenting on 18 January.
  • Got the Right People? - Richard Flint joins us for an afternoon session that same day and talks to us about hiring smart and retaining well. We all know how difficult it is to find the RIGHT person for the job. Richard will help take the horror out of the effort.
  • Got Skills? - Then on the 19th Richard is back with "Mastering the Five Skills for Effective Leadership". What skills are necessary to be able to get people to their most productive level? He'll have the answers!

Don't miss out on this fantastic training...it ain't at all scary!

One other thing:  "Knock, knock" (Who's there?) "Booo!" (Booo who?) "Don't cry it's Halloween!"

Thanks for reading...see you in Corpus Christi! 

 

 

 


Doubling Our Membership

Over the weekend several of us were talking about membership, the life-blood of any organization including the National Tractor Parts Dealer Association. It Join us imagecame to us that there are three things any organization must do to recruit and retain members:

  • Let Perspective Members Know You Exist
  • Provide Value for Membership
  • Ask 

Of the three NTPDA does a bang up job of providing members with value. Our website lists nearly two-dozen benefits. We also are pretty good at providing an opportunity to network, sell and learn during our Annual Conference and Trade Show. And, we're always here to help boost our members through our social media efforts.

Where we fall down a bit is in letting perspective members know we exist, sharing the benefits and making the ask. Sure we share information among our existing members through a wide variety of means from blogging to emails the quarterly NTPDA Bulletin. But, that is sort of like an echo chamber...we're talking among ourselves. For retention that is important but what about...growth?

The former Membership Committee had some ideas including outreach efforts, inviting potential members to our Annual Conference and reducing first year dues. Maybe it's time to ramp up the "Idea Machine" again...

Or what if each of us asked another supplier or a competitor to join our ranks. If we all committed to asking one additional person or company to join us and clearly laid out the case for value we could double our membership by January.

Perhaps it's something to ponder but more importantly just...do.

We'd love to hear your thoughts. Shoot us an email or comment here on the blog.

Thanks for reading and thank you for your membership!