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If there is a constant in the collision repair world today, that constant is change. And shop owners and managers need to keep looking ahead to see where technology is taking the industry and then use those changes to help them succeed. So said PPG’s Randy Dewing, senior manager, MVP Business Solutions, in his opening remarks to more than 300 attendees at the recent PPG MVP Business Solutions Conference held at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort and Convention Center in Orlando, Fla.
Titled “Visionary Leadership: A Call to Action,” the three-day event offered speakers, seminars and discussion groups focusing on how collision shop owners and managers can improve their leadership skills and play a role in fostering a high-performance culture in the rapidly changing collision industry.
“We continue to work on interdependent success, partnering with our customers to work on business performance required to be the competitive leaders in their markets,” says Jim Berkey, director, MVP Business Solutions. “Our conferences are an opportunity to bring a strong mix of passionate, successful people together to continue the learning process.”
Keynote speaker Scott Klososky centered on the conference theme and emphasized that while making good technical decisions is important, acting on those decisions is absolutely essential.
“Those who are reactive will end up being taught by their proactive competitors,” said Klososky.
He added that a long-term vision is necessary: looking ahead five years to determine what investments will need to be made in people, products and processes. Klososky also discussed how technology and forward thinking can help business leaders seize their “unfair share of business.” Most critical, he said, is the need to have a process in place to address change and implement your strategy for success. Klososky went on to outline a step-by-step “visionary leadership” process to help lead a company into the future.
A representative of the Disney Institute, Austin Brock, spoke on the topic of leading through turbulent times. Brock presented the strategies and tactics a leader can implement to ensure a company stays on course to success. She pointed out leaders need to have a vision and must effectively communicate it to their organization. In doing so, they need to shift the organizational culture to focus on behaviors and results to support that shift with genuinely open, two-way communication. Brock also offered process strategies for turbulent scenarios and for the difficulties caused and posed by the changing nature of competition.
Richard Flint, also a keynote speaker and one of the top personal development coaches in the country, delivered a presentation, “Recharging the Human Spirit,” in which he demonstrated how to motivate personnel, re-build morale and re-energize a company to function at its highest levels.
Norm Angrove, senior manager, Value Programs, and John Martin, manager performance learning, PPG Value Added Programs, gave a seminar discussing marketing in the 21st century covering the technological and online opportunities available today and how social media and other techniques can help collision shops hasten their success. They stressed the growing importance of this aspect of marketing as new generations of employees and customers all more tuned in to the online world enter the marketplace.
Attendees also heard MVP Business Solutions Managers David Knapp and Mike Gunnells deliver an introduction to hands-on, problem-solving methodologies that have been successfully used at the OEM level and may be applied to the collision industry.
Conference participants were able to join in a number of breakout discussion sessions and other seminars designed to help them develop and implement improved business models as well as motivate employees and prepare for change.
The conference is one component of an all-inclusive range of MVP value-added programs and services for PPG customers. The next PPG MVP Business Solutions Conference, themed “Journey to Excellence,” will be held at the Rancho Las Palmas Resort and Spa in Palm Springs, Calif., March 27-29, 2011.
PPG MVP Business Solutions