Consider the Role and Value of Teamwork - From the Chairman
Construction Equipment Distribution magazine is published by the Associated Equipment Distributors, a nonprofit trade association founded in 1919, whose membership is primarily comprised of the leading equipment dealerships and rental companies in the U.S. and Canada. AED membership also includes equipment manufacturers and industry-service firms. CED magazine has been published continuously since 1920. Associated Equipment Distributors
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SECTION: From the Chairman

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Consider the Role and Value of Teamwork

By Dennis Vander Molen

Article Date: 09-01-2010
Copyright(C) 2010 Associated Equipment Distributors. All Rights Reserved.


As well as your own pivotal role as the leader who can make the team thrive


Our culture today puts a tremendous emphasis on athletics. Our attraction to the competition and sacrifice in the arena draws many of us into a world all its own.
 
Every team has its own personality, and one member can change the way a team works. A leader or a player can determine how the results of hours of training, experience, and classroom play themselves out for the whole team.
 
How does our industry look at training, practice, and role-playing? How does it prepare to meet all the many opportunities and challenges of the day? How do we train our trainers? How does our business view its responsibility in our team’s development? How do we encourage and challenge our team to grow in our contribution for the greater good? The timely encouragement of one another can be the deciding factor for our team’s effectiveness in our marketplace.
 
A challenge we face in our industry is that of attrition. Studies have shown that the distribution industry has lost nearly 35 percent of its people, many of whom have chosen other fields of vocation. The challenge of recruitment is hanging over our heads, and will grow substantially if and when our industry recovers. Technicians, sales, and product support people will be incredibly hard to find and expensive to retain. Vo-tech schools will be hard-pressed to meet the needs of our dealerships. Some proactive involvement from you and our industry experts at AED will be necessary. Effective recruitment will be essential for our success in the future.
 
Another consideration for all of us: How do we view leadership? Every team needs and demands a good leader. You are undoubtedly a leader in some capacity. How are you sharpening your skills and those of your team? How are we attracting some of the best talent to our industry?
 
Winning and losing are the result of every game we play. How we respond to the win or loss is how we develop the team. There are no perfect people out there, but we are all on the same journey. A team is made of several imperfect people with various skill sets, and it’s up to us to encourage each member so they can grow and make additional contributions.
 
As an aside, I can tell you that expanding your outlook by reading is effective. What are you reading lately? Currently, I am in the middle of Winston Churchill, CEO: 25 lessons for bold business leaders by Alan Axelrod.
 
Teamwork in Action

Finally, I want to congratulate AED’s winning team in Oak Brook, Ill. They proved their metal during a major game-changer following the July flood that drove the entire staff out of the building AED has occupied since 1964. Team members rose to the task of completely moving and outfitting a new location in a very short period of time. And a special hats off to Dave Gordon and Martin Cabral for working through the wee hours of the night saving computers, critical documents and files from the destructive reach of waters that invaded their building the night of July 23. Thank you!
 
Each of you, the members of AED, is also a valued team member of the AED team. Thank you for your continued participation – we’re here to help you however we can.

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